Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Friday, 25 July 2014

London Underground Upgrades To LED Lighting

Underground stations including Tottenham Court Road, Bond Street and Victoria are currently being redeveloped. Bob Benn, stations engineering manager for London Underground told the Lighting for Rail conference that once the make-overs have been complete, these stations will use 100% LED lighting
The initial lighting design was created before the LED boom, and so planned to use fluorescent lighting products. In order to keep up with the times, London Underground lighting teams have agreed to update specifications ensuring they take full advantage of newer LED technology. 

Benn said: "We were basically dealing with an obsolete design. We've managed to change it all to LED lighting, but that's been a major challenge in London Underground in order to get that through the system." 

Although LED lighting has a higher investment cost, London Underground will see fast payback due to LED lighting's significant reduction in energy consumption and maintenance costs. The longer lifetime offered by LED lighting is a massive benefit to the London Underground maintenance team as conducting maintenance in busy, hard to access stations has an extremely high cost.

A number of London Underground stations have already been upgraded from costly T8 fluorescent lamps to LED tubes. This change-over saw a return on investment in 18 months and has saved millions of pounds in maintenance costs. 

Speaking of the astronomical savings, Benn said: "From the point of view of whole-life cost, we're very aware of the reduced maintenance of new technology."

London Underground estimate that work at Bond Street will be finished by 2017, while work at Victoria and Tottenham Court Road will continue until 2018. These redevelopments are part of a London wide scheme of station upgrades to prepare for the completion of Crossrail.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Warning from Ofgem: Lights may fade this winter


National Grid may struggle to balance supply and demand of electricity; resulting in fading lights.   UK energy regulator, Ofgem has raised concern that in the event of a harsh winter in 2015,

This month Ofgem divulged their electricity capacity estimates for the next two years- if meteorology reports foretelling a harsh winter are true, lights could be dimming for a total of nine hours. 

Ofgem's report states: "the margins of surplus electricity are still expected to drop to their lowest level in 2015-2016, resulting from closure of old power stations. After this period, the margins are expected to improve as new power stations are introduced."

The estimates for electricity capacity are based on data from National Grid in conjunction with Ofgem's own analysis. 

Friday, 18 July 2014

Taiwan places restrictions on LED lighting efficacy

Earlier this month, the Taiwanese Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA) announced that all LED lights must have a minimum efficacy of 70 lumens per watt. According to this new legislation, all indoor, warm-white LED lamps must have a minimum efficacy of 70lm/W while cool-white LEDs must reach a minimum of 75lm/W.

The Global Lighting Association (GLA) support the implementation of this legislation, their representative Michael Ng said: “Minimum efficacy requirements should be set at such a level that good-quality products are widely available and at an affordable price. The GLA globally support one minimum level of performance for lighting products, just like what is announced by Taiwan’s MOEA Bureau of Energy. This is very different from just an energy labelling scheme. In general this serves the purposes of ensuring safe and quality products for the consumers, maintaining interoperability and competition on performance. There are adequate surveillance and penalties in place to ensure that the vendors are truthful and the standards used are internationally harmonised.”

When asked about this new legislation, Thorn Lighting’s Head of Global Lighting Applications commented: “it’s an interesting turn of events, the move is clearly designed to discourage people using high colour temperature, or perhaps to encourage retailers or manufacturers to favour warmer light by making it easier to comply.

Although he is not sure the move will have a knock on effect: “whether it will catch on on a global scare is a difficult one. We see general disquiet over the use of high CCT in the outdoors in many countries. Generally it is not liked, but that may be a more historic thing. Previously such cold colours were simply not available. In some countries, South Africa for example, there is generally a wider acceptance of colder colours, less so in Europe.”


In Taiwan in 2013, lighting accounts for 10.9% of the country’s total power consumption, according to figures obtained by the MOEA’s Bureau of Energy (BOE). Residential lighting accounted for 40% of the total lighting power consumption. 

Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Megaman’s new Incanda LED range, putting the sparkle back in LEDs

The Megaman Incanda LED range has revolutionised LED lighting. The lamps are uniquely designed to resemble point light sources and emit a brilliant sparkling beam, similar to that of an incandescent lamp.

The Incanda LED series was created with sustainability in mind, saving up to 89% in energy consumption (vs. traditional incandescent lamps) without any detriment to the light source’s performance. The Incanda range offers massive savings and is particularly suited to large venues such as hotels, restaurants, lounges and bars which would benefit from the luxury of sparkling light.


The Incanda range includes, Candles, Golf Balls and GLS lamps in BC, SBC and ES caps, these are all designed to replace expensive, inefficient incandescent lamps. Incanda LEDs' clear, glass finish enhances the sparkling effect of the lamp making them perfectly suitable for application in chandeliers or crystal light fittings. Incanda lamps are a viable energy saving replacement to traditional incandescent lamps with a high luminous efficacy of 100 lumens per watt and an extended lamp life of up to 50,000 hours. The dimmable versions of the Incanda LED lamps offer linear dimming from 100-10%, allowing you to create a variety of ambiances. 

For more information on this or any other LED product, visit our website http://theledspecialist.co.uk/ or call the office on 0118 9507125

Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Philips’ Unite Lighting Project- Improved Quality at reduced costs

Philips help Unite, the UK’s leading operator of purpose built student accommodation, to help improve lighting quality while reducing lifecycle costs at The Grange student accommodation in Leicester.

Project Brief:

Who?                            Unite
Where?                         Leicester
What products?         Circular bulkhead LED, Coreline Recessed and Pacific LED
What services?           Lighting survey, installation, commissioning, after-sales service and on-                                         going support

Helping students see the light:

Philips provides an LED lighting  and services package to Unite, the UK’s leading operator of purpose built student accommodation, to help improve lighting quality while reducing lifecycle costs at The Grange student accommodation in Leicester.

Unite provides homes to 41,000 students in over 130 properties across 23 university cities and works in partnership with higher education providers, as well as renting rooms directly to students.

The Grange is located on the main campus of De Montfort University and is home to 220 students. The property is made up of shared flats with communal kitchens and living areas, and self contained individual studio apartments.

Supporting sustainable business:

Unite is committed to minimising its environmental impact and has an on-going programme to improve energy efficiency at its properties as part of its overall corporate responsibility strategy. Alongside this, the company prides itself on providing a high quality home environment for its students.

“Lighting was identified as an area where improvements in energy performance would also enhance the internal environment for our customers,” recalls Unites Energy and Utilities Manager James Tiernan.

At The Grange, Philips evaluated the existing lighting to identify areas for improvement, using its recently enhanced lighting survey methodology. Philip’s methodology ensures in-depth understanding of the existing installation and the customer’s business goals and objectives. This information underpins a tailored solution that delivers optimum benefits.

After conducting the survey, Philips managed the installation and commissioning of LED lighting throughout The Grange. LED lighting has been installed in all bedrooms, kitchens, common areas, back office spaces and external areas. Extensive use has been made of circular bulkhead LED fittings, which combine excellent light distribution with a robust housing and IP65 rating. These have been used in students’ rooms, corridors, kitchen areas and stairwells to replace old 2D fluorescent fittings, bringing significant improvements in energy consumption, light output and lifespan. Administration areas, such as reception areas, are using CoreLine Recessed fittings, replacing modular fluorescent luminaires, while Pacific LED fittings have been installed in the laundry room. Presence detectors have also been introduced in corridors and daylight linking in spaces that receive high levels of natural daylight.

Philips will also deliver after-sales service and on-going support to the Unite team.

Efficient solutions with no compromise on style:

The entire lighting solution not only minimises the building’s energy consumption but will also dramatically lower lifecycle costs by out-living previous solutions and lasting for many years beyond traditional lighting fixtures.

 In addition, the new lighting offers improvements in uniformity, quality, and control of light, which provides students with an environment conductive to study and learning whilst also improving the visual appearance in all areas of the building.

“Moving from predominantly 28 watt 2D fluorescent fittings to 18 watt LED fittings has delivered a substantial reduction in energy consumption and the improved controls have bought further savings still. Around 30% of our maintenance requests are lighting related, so we expect significant reduction here too, bringing additional savings in hardware and man hours,” James Tiernan continued.


“There are other intangible benefits that can’t be quantified but are very important. For example, the improved light levels create a better living environment for students, which is important for us in supporting their success whilst at university. Universities are also beginning to look more closely at the carbon emissions of their supply chain, so it’s important we can demonstrate that we are taking measures to reduce our carbon footprint,” he concludes.

Friday, 4 July 2014

Student Alertness Increases Under LED Lighting

A study conducted by Fagerhult’s lighting academy found student’s alertness (caused by the hormone cortisol) was boosted by increasing LED light levels.

Although these findings are novel for LED lighting, the link between alertness and lighting levels had already been established in a 2009 study using T5 fluorescent luminaires. The work conducted with fluorescent luminaries showed cortisol levels in student’s blood increased when exposed to boosts of a high luminance in the morning and early afternoon. Results from the 2009 study showed increased fluorescent light levels saw students’ performance rise by one grade on average during the darkest part of the year.

Henrik Clausen, director of the Fagerhult Lighting Academy said: “People started asking whether LED lighting would have the same effect as T5 so we had to repeat our research.”

This latest study measured the hormone levels of students at a university in Sweden, researchers found student’s cortisol levels increased in LED lit environments with luminance levels of 100cd/m2, mirroring the results of the 2009 study. When asked about the results, Henrik Clausen said: “Actually the pupils’ cortisol levels raised a little bit faster with LEDs that they did with fluorescent lamps. It’s probably because there is an inherent peak of blue light in LEDs, but we don’t know that for sure.”

The research facility is now looking at students’ grades to see if the improved hormone levels results in better academic performance, but has not yet proven a correlation in the LED-lit classrooms.


When speaking at the International Lighting Fixture Design conference in London last week, Clausen cautioned that the research should not be applied too widely: “If you want to do research you have to choose a path and we chose to focus on classroom lighting, so we don’t claim that this approach works for everything”. 

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Barker’s For the Ban

Last week a hotly debated topic in the House of Commons was the European Union’s ban on incandescent lamps. 

Conservative MP for Bury North, David Nuttall proposed that as part of our renegotiation of membership of the EU, the UK should push for complete exemption from the ban on incandescent lamps.

The pan-European ban on incandescent lamps has seen the gradual introduction of energy efficient LED light sources since its introduction in 2009. Nuttall believes the UK should be given back “the right to be able to use whatever light bulbs we want without being told what to do by the EU”. 

Energy Minister Greg Barker highlighted the benefits of the ban stating “By having energy-efficient light bulbs we are driving innovation and driving down people’s electricity bills. We do not want to go back to having high-cost energy bills and turning our back on innovation.

Labour MP for Edinburgh East, Sheila Gilmore questioned whether those with photosensitive health conditions, for who LED lighting and fluorescent lighting can cause ill health, might be allowed to continue to use incandescent lamps.


Barker responded: “The UK is sympathetic to concerns raised about the potential health impacts of lighting. We want a flexible approach. And we want to ensure that the EU takes on board the health concerns that have been raised about these technologies.” He closes the debate by promising to press the European Commission to take this into account in the upcoming review.