The technology continues to evolve, acquire new functions and devices is increasingly common to have on hand a team a few years ago was only a dream.

by Alejandra Garcia Velez

By monitoring, scheduling and intervene every detail of the lighting of a building, significant savings are achieved in energy and optimize each space by function.

by Alejandra Garcia Velez

Speaking lighting control can be referring to many things; for example, it is included from the installation of a simple command on / off, To reducing manual and automatic light control only rooms or complete buildings. In addition, the lights can be controlled via keyboard or dimmers, timers, occupancy sensors, among other systems. Lighting control also includes the use of sunlight through the use of automatic curtains.

Also, the decision to use such systems can be based on different variables, as initially allows the visual environment is managed to use the appropriate level of light according to the activity that will develop, but there is also a significant energy savings . The latter reason is that today drives companies toward implementing lighting controls, either individually or as part of a larger project that includes energy efficient automation of other building services.

David M. Weinstein, vice president of sales for Windows Systems Division Lutron Electronics, said in this regard that it is common integrations between systems of lights and blinds, energy saving features and even integration with security systems for the lights react to intrusions or emergencies. There are also systems that monitor and measure power consumption in a room, area or building. While lights and blinds work together to achieve a balance between the use of sunlight and electricity, while absorbing heat and burden of the HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning) is reduced.

Examples of facilities

Integrative firms learn to work with customers to understand their needs and respond with designs that address the functional and architectural requirements of the project. Lutron Electronics, through its website, presents some cases of integrations carried out in buildings in the United States; The New York Times Building, for example, 70% reduced energy consumption of the building, which translates into savings of dollars a year 315.100, 1.250 also means fewer emissions metric tons of CO2.

The building has floors 52 open spaces and glass walls that offer sweeping views of the property occupants of neighboring skyscrapers as the primary attribute. The whole structure is designed for maximum light. To take advantage of the above, it was necessary also to have an appropriate lighting control system; Quantum, which employs strategies such as controlling sunlight, monitoring occupation, time control, among others, that give users of the building as comfortably as possible: in building one of the solutions Lutron was installed .

As previously stated The New York Times Building reduced 70% its energy consumption and discriminated as follows: 10% by occupancy sensors (turn off the lights if the spaces are empty), the 2% was due schedules (lighting changes during certain times of day), another 30% came from the use of sunlight (the intensity of artificial light is decreased during daylight hours), and 58% thanks to the adaptation of the light levels, ie each space has a different level of lighting according to your needs. In this case sensors are installed to maximize the brightness of the space, and imperceptibly continuous electric light levels are adjusted lighting maintaining a consistent level all the time, so that people do not perceive the changes.

In addition, each floor is divided by areas, each has its own levels to suit the requirements of employees and the work done in a given location, also according to the amount of sunlight penetrating into space. To achieve this level of precision was necessary to install sensors around 18.000.

Another case exposed by Lutron, is the campus of Georgian College in Ontario, Canada, in which EcoSystem, a system that has allowed the school to monitor and modify light levels in different campus buildings was installed. The project required around 3.300 7 lamps in buildings. During installation they were located light sensors, occupancy and in-wall controls that can be programmed by university staff. As a result it is saving more than 70% in energy costs compared to the old system.

The project has also allowed, for example, that teachers handle the lighting depending on the activities that will develop; in a traditional presentation on the board lighting board it is increased to allow better viewing, but when you go to make a presentation video, the light is decreased in the area near the screen and increases near the desks of students . Similarly classrooms, meeting rooms and auditoriums are configured.

This is just a sample of things that can be achieved with a good installation. The technology is available, it all depends on the ability of the integrator to give the customer what they need.

The Latino market

Theresa Baer, ​​manager of communications and marketing vNet Colorado, said that interest in control systems continuously increasing lighting for convenience and savings achieved; however, the rehabilitation of facilities is becoming popular among homeowners preferring improve existing ones to build. "Integrators will have higher profits seeking to do more work in less time," he said.

Meanwhile, Weinstein believes that the market for lighting controls is very large but little explored. "The value of a lighting control system and blinds versus switch on / off or a manual shutter is significant. Our main obstacle to growth is knowledge and customer education on this issue. "

However, Weinstein said, thanks to the growth of the market value and residential customer base in the region, demand for lighting systems is growing hand in hand with the increasing complexity of designs. Customers, both residential and commercial, are increasingly seeking an aesthetic functional control, and effective.

Within a lights extravaganza they are as important as music, audio or artist presented. Three experts in the field reveal clear and dark lighting shows and nightclubs.

by Héctor Gómez Pérez

LED lighting is presented as a very good alternative for its energy efficiency, lifetime and low cost. Furthermore, organic LEDs or OLEDs are emerging as strong competitors in the area of ​​high definition displays.

by Johana Alejandra Garcia


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