Lighting Controls Association Seeks Web Developer

The Lighting Controls Association is currently seeking candidates for web developer for a special project. If you have advanced expertise in developing websites and would like to view the RFP, please contact Craig DiLouie here.

Wake Technical Wins IES Lighting Control Innovation Award Of Merit

The Lighting Control Innovation Award was created in 2011 as part of the Illuminating Engineering Society’s Illumination Awards program, which recognizes professionalism, ingenuity and originality in lighting design. LCA is proud to sponsor the Lighting Control Innovation Award, which recognizes projects that exemplify the effective application of lighting controls in nonresidential spaces.

This month, we will explore the role that lighting controls play in facilitating the education experience in a lecture hall at Wake Technical Community College’s Northern Wake Campus. Lighting and control design by David B. Williams, Jon Cardenas and Anthony J. Garcia, lighting designers with Clark Nexsen, PC & Theatre Consultants Collaborative, Inc. Lighting controls by ETC (Architectural DMX Controls, Wall Stations, Touch Screen, Wireless Network – ETC Unison Paradigm, Theatrical Dimming Rack – ETC Sensor AF 48 Module 96 Circuit, Dimming Rack with ETC ELTS2 Emergency Lighting Transfer System DMX Controls – ETC Element w/ 1 touchscreen monitor & 1 secondary standard monitor & remote).

Designers were tasked with providing a low maintenance, energy efficient “lecture hall” in a new academic building that included as many “auditorium” performance features as economically possible. This was achieved with fifty 86W, 5376 lumen, 40° spread, diffuse lensed, DMX dimmable, 3500K LED cylinders suspended between wood panels providing illumination for various learning and performance functions.


House lighting controls are integrated with the performance dimming system, providing seamless controls during performances for smooth fades or quick pops. Each fixture is independently addressed allowing the stage manager to focus light exactly where desired.


LED linear fixtures at the top and bottom of 8 windows and 5 faux windows set the mood, mimic daylight or augment performances, bringing the “stage” into the audience.


In the center of the audience, the control booth is equipped with a performance grade DMX controller, allowing the stage manager complete control of house and performance lighting.


When the stage manager is not present, untrained users can operate a simplified password protected touchscreen controller to recall and save presets, raise and lower shades or adjust lighting zones.


Color coded LED controls are provided at each entrance and catwalk for pre-programmed scene calls and zone toggle; these lockout and change to blue when the room is set to “performance mode”. The system includes a Wi-Fi interface for control via mobile applications and wireless remote.


Fixtures align with the raised ceiling above the stage.


Fluorescents are switched backstage and above catwalks for maintenance.


Blue LED aisle lights provided for performance operators.


White LED aisle lights provided for performance egress. During an emergency, select circuits including non-dimming emergency-only LED cylinders are energized by generator via an automatic transfer switch.


LCA TV: Fresco by Acuity Brands

This short video, produced by the Lighting Controls Association at the 2014 LIGHTFAIR event, introduces the building industry to Acuity Brands’ Fresco Touchscreen Lighting Control System.

KW Engineering Publishes Whitepaper Proposes BAS-Lighting Control Integration for Existing Buildings

A new whitepaper by KW Engineering, “Beyond Advanced Lighting Controls: Reaching Net Zero with Integrated Building Controls” (James Donson, Jon Schoenfeld and Bruce Chamberlain), identifies advanced lighting controls (networked lighting) as a major contributor to energy cost savings for existing buildings. The paper states that greater savings for both lighting and HVAC systems can be achieved through closer integration of lighting and existing building automation systems.

Click here to read it.

Daintree Networks Wins Six Product and Company Innovation Awards

Daintree Networks, Inc. won both company and ControlScope™ product honors from the 6th annual awards program encompassing the world’s best from every major industry. Competing against large and small organizations from all over the world, the company was honored in multiple categories at the 2014 Golden Bridge Awards.

Golden Bridge Awards are an annual industry and peers recognition program honoring best companies in every major industry from large to small and new start-ups in North America, Europe, Middle-East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, and Latin-America, Best New Products and Services, Best Innovations, Management and Teams, Women in Business and the Professions, Case Studies, Customer Satisfaction, and PR and Marketing Campaigns from all over the world.

Daintree received one of the highest honors, the Grand Pillar Award, which was also given to AMD, Cisco Systems, Inc., Wipro and others. More than 40 judges from a broad spectrum of industries from around the globe determined the winners from an illustrious group of competitors, including public and private firms, for-profits and non-profits, and start-ups. Mandeep Khera, vice president of marketing and channels, accepted the trophies on behalf of the company during the dinner and awards presentation held on September 8, 2014, in San Francisco, CA.

Daintree Networks won Golden Bridge Awards in the following categories:

• Grand Pillar Award
• Innovative Company of the Year (Bronze)
• Best New Partner Recruitment Program of the Year (Gold)

In addition, the Daintree ControlScope wireless control solution for building energy management (v3.2) won awards in the following categories:

• Innovations – Information Technology and Security, Green IT (Silver)
• Innovations – Information Technology and Security, Information Technology (Software) – Innovations (Bronze)
• Innovations in Technology (Bronze)

Click here to learn more about the Golden Bridge Awards. Click here to learn more about ControlScope by Daintree Networks.

NEMA Updates LSD 64-2014 Lighting Controls Terminology

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) recently updated LSD 64-2014 Lighting Controls Terminology. This white paper, which was originally published in 2012, was updated to clarify terminology related to daylight responsive controls.

NEMA LSD 64 defines terminology related to controls for lighting systems for non-residential and residential applications. The goal of LSD 64 is for NEMA definitions to ultimately be used as the definitive reference for codes, standards, and legislation. This will eliminate the creation of new meanings for already defined terms, will minimize misapplication of controls terminology, and will eliminate the need for customized glossaries and terminology sections.

This document was developed by reviewing every known description for lighting control terminology, and represents ultimately agreeing upon best definitions. The working group reviewed definitions from documents such as American Society of Heating and Refrigerating and Air Conditioning Engineers standards, Illuminating Engineering Society of North America Handbook, NEMA guides, and all energy codes in use at the time, including California Title 24.

Click here to download it now.

5 Ways to Make Your Lighting Retrofit Easier and More Cost Effective

Guest post by Brent Protzman, PhD, CEM, LEED GA, LC

Protzman is the Manager of Energy Information & Analytics at Lutron Electronics

Lighting retrofits, layered with advanced control strategies can improve occupant comfort, enhance productivity, deliver greater building efficiencies and often result in lighting electricity savings up to 60% or more. New light sources, specifically LEDs and fluorescents, continue to provide opportunities for better light quality, lower electricity bills and payback in as little as two years.

As you prepare to save all that energy, think about these five tips for making product selection and installation easier too.

1. Wireless. Wireless lighting control systems have come a long way, and even a solution as simple as a wireless occupancy sensor and switch can put you on the path to a 30% lighting energy reduction in just a few minutes. And wireless controls can be installed with little-to-no disruption to building occupants. Wireless control solutions can include occupancy sensing, dimming, daylighting harvesting and even automated shading solutions depending on your budget and energy-saving goals.

2. Apps. Specifically apps that simplify audits, proposals and return on investment calculations. It’s easier to make the right decisions when you have the right tools. Look for new apps that require only basic project information to provide lighting energy audits, lighting control proposals, bills-of-materials and projected ROI. Apps can save time and money and help you confidently choose a system just right for your building.

3. Scalability. Today the conference room, tomorrow the entire building. Look for control solutions that can adapt to your changing needs. Digital control systems typically offer the greatest flexibility, functionality and opportunity for expansion. Look for a lighting and shade control system that can be expanded easily, without replacing the existing equipment and without complex reprogramming. To ensure that the system can accommodate future growth, ask the manufacturer how easily it scales from a single control or small system, to a larger space or building.

4. Data. It’s one thing to plan for energy savings and another thing to actually see the results. Manufacturers now offer a variety of measurement and verification tools that help you understand how much energy is used, where, and when. Look for software tools that have the ability to log data about lighting use, occupancy and daylight. Make sure the software can be installed on any computer in your facility, offers an easy-to-understand graphical interface, and give you full access to the data without requiring you to send information off to a third-party. Effective systems put energy analysis at your fingertips, and improve your ability to predict energy savings.

5. Service. Let’s face it. Sometimes you get by with a little help from your friends. When you are selecting lighting and control systems, ask about available support services, online help, and customer service. Look for a manufacturer that offers 24/7 technical support…just in case. And if you are retrofitting a large space, or an entire building, consider the types of warranty and service options available to ensure that your investment is protected today, and for as long as you own the system.

A lighting retrofit can be greater than the sum of its parts if you plan appropriately, select a system with the future in mind, and have clear goals for system performance and payback.

Lighting Controls Association Offers EE101B: Introduction to Lighting Control Equipment

introduction to lighting control equipment

The Lighting Controls Association (LCA) has published a new course to enhance its popular Education Express program: EE101B: Introduction to Lighting Control Equipment.

Residing at the Association’s website, Education Express provides in-depth education about lighting controls and controllable ballast technology, application, system design and commissioning.

EE101A: Introduction to Lighting Control introduces students to the purpose, benefits and strategies of controllable lighting, from occupancy sensing to daylight harvesting. EE101B: Introduction to Lighting Control Equipment, authored by Craig DiLouie, LC, provides a summary view of the types of lighting control equipment popularly used to enact these strategies.

At the conclusion of the course, an optional online comprehension test is available, with automatic grading; a passing grade enables the student to claim education credit. EE101B: Introduction to Lighting Control Equipment is accredited/registered with the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Continuing Education System (CES), which recognizes 3.0 Learning Units (LU)/Health, Safety, Welfare (HSW) credits; and the National Council on Quality in the Lighting Professions (NCQLP), which recognizes 3.0 LEUs towards maintenance of Lighting Certified (LC) certification.

Founded in 2006, Education Express serves more than 20,000 students, who have benefited from more than 160,000 completions of learning modules and 103,000 comprehension tests taken online, enabling them to earn education credit.

Click here to take this course free.

NEMA Lighting Standard Recommended in Revised DOE Report

As reported earlier this week on this blog, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) revised its October 2013 report, Dimming LEDs with Phase-Cut Dimmers: The Specifier’s Process for Maximizing Success. The new report features recommendation of a National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) lighting standard, NEMA SSL 7A-2013 Phase Cut Dimming for Solid State Lighting: Basic Compatibility.

DOE’s report specifies that for wall-box installation, a NEMA SSL 7A-compliant dimmer be used with compliant LED (light-emitting diodes) sources. Pairing these products guarantees a level of compatibility and ensures the dimmer will not negate the dimming claims of the lamp or luminaire.

Jim Brodrick on Dimming LEDs with Phase-Cut Dimmers

Republication of Postings from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Solid-State Lighting Program

by Jim Brodrick, SSL Program Manager, U.S. Department of Energy

You may recall that last year, DOE’s GATEWAY program released a report entitled Dimming LEDs with Phase-Cut Dimmers: The Specifier’s Process for Maximizing Success, which was created in response to issues raised about LED dimming by energy-efficiency organizations and specifiers, and was based on experience from CALiPER testing and GATEWAY demonstrations. That report was recently revised to include updated information on a GATEWAY demonstration involving the installation of LED lighting and controls at the Burden Museum in Troy, NY. The new information is very instructive.

The LED lighting — which ranged from dedicated track lighting for displays, to strip lighting in coves for uplighting the sculptural cherry-paneled ceiling, to period white globe chandeliers with A-lamps and amber rings to simulate the glow of gaslight — and controls were installed at the Burden in early 2014. Because of delays, which are quite common in architectural projects such as this one, the lighting designer rechecked the specifications. In the 18 months that had elapsed since those specifications were devised, several LED lighting products had been discontinued or redesigned, which necessitated changing the specifications and then rechecking all affected dimming zones.

In some cases, the replacement product resulted in more LED watts on the dimming zone, and this higher dimming load required a power module interface (an electrical device mounted between the dimmer and the load) to increase the dimming zone’s capacity. In other cases, the compatibility tables showed that the new LED products had a higher effective power draw (probably due to repetitive peak currents), so the load exceeded the dimmer’s capacity. Power module interfaces solved this issue as well, effectively increasing the capacity of the dimming circuit. In another case, manufacturer information showed that the changed LED product was more compatible with a forward-phase dimmer type than with a reverse-phase dimmer type, so the specification for the dimmer model was changed. The controls manufacturer worked closely with the lighting designer and the electrical engineer to ensure full compatibility on all the dimming circuits.

The specified control system was checked and ordered by a controls integrator, who worked as a subcontractor to the electrical contractor on this project. The integrator worked directly with the contractor during the installation, and commissioned the completed system to ensure that it operated as specified. Part of the integrator’s function was to keep track of design issues and changes that evolved during the project. For example, late in the project the original hard-wired control system was changed to a wireless system as that product became available, which dramatically reduced the cost of installing the wiring in the building.


Installation of the lighting and controls went smoothly, once the lighting designer made the necessary changes to the plans and specifications. The contractor was delighted that only three 20A electrical circuits were required for the entire project, and was impressed by how bright the LED lights were, given the low wattage. The controls integrator helped the contractor understand and install the control system, including the effective derating of load capacity on the control zones, and advised installing deeper switch boxes to make wiring easier, and following vertical and horizontal spacing recommendations for mounting power module interfaces between the dimmers and loads.

Museum staff members were thrilled with the visual appearance of the LED lighting, the remarkable range of dimming control, the ability to demonstrate different scenarios with one touch in a tablet or smartphone app, and the ease with which different scenes could be programmed.

The end result was that the process for checking LED product compatibility with phase-cut dimmers specified for each dimming zone worked very well. Although it added time to the design process, with a recheck and adjustments to the dimming specifications just before bidding and ordering products, none of the dimming circuits produced erratic or unexpected behavior once installed. Museum staff reported that all of the dimmable LED products dimmed smoothly to low levels.

The design costs using the LED system were higher than expected, because of redesign costs just before the project bid and also because there were multiple mockups to visually check LED luminaire performance and compatibility with the dimming system. Because the LEDs were new products to all parties on the design and construction team, nobody was familiar with the equipment, the catalog numbers, or LED installation issues. Pushing the envelope in technology can result in additional learning time and multiple iterations with luminaire and controls orders, for example, but all parties involved considered the project an invaluable experience that will reduce needed time on future LED projects.

For more details about this pioneering LED lighting project, see the full report here.