The DALI Alliance recently extended DALI-2, which standardizes interoperability and control of LED drivers and sensors, with a version that more finely addresses the needs of the Internet of Things, which calls for individual device addressability, connectivity, and two-way data exchange.
On January 1, 2023, the 2022 version of California’s energy code—Title 24, Part 6 of the Building Standards Code—takes effect, superseding the previous 2019 version. In terms of lighting controls, the numerous changes include various clarifications and tuning along with two major provisions requiring occupant-sensing in offices larger than 250 sq.ft. and demand-responsive lighting controls. Designers and specifiers need to understand these changes before they begin working on code-covered new construction and alteration projects that will go out for permit in California in 2023.
The new incarnation of the Commercial Buildings Tax Deduction offers a strong incentive to stretching energy efficiency in new buildings and modernizing existing buildings. In new buildings, it incentivizes more detailed design and the most advanced control options. In existing buildings, it incentivizes a wide range of lighting and advanced control options that, when coupled with available utility rebates, can substantially reduce initial cost that remains the largest inhibitor to investment in reducing operating costs via energy efficiency.
Next year, the 2019 version of ANSI/ASHRAE/IES 90.1, Energy Standard for Buildings except Low-Rise Residential Buildings, takes effect as the national energy reference standard. This is based on a July 2021 Department of Energy (DOE) ruling that determined the standard saved more energy than the preceding 2016 version. By July 28, 2023, all states must adopt a commercial building energy code at least as stringent as the standard, or justify why they cannot comply.
As lighting controls become more sophisticated in application and capabilities, properly documenting the system’s intent and settings becomes critical. One of the most important documents is the control narrative, including a detailed sequence of operations. Though required by commercial building energy codes as documentation for many new construction and major renovation projects, aside from the Lighting Controls Association, manufacturers, and a few other sources, there are few resources providing guidance about how to write them. Enter the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES), which took on the challenge by publishing ANSI/IES LP-16-22, Documenting Control Intent Narratives and Sequences of Operations in June 2022.
Luminaire-level lighting controls (LLLC), also called embedded controls, are lighting control systems in which sensors and controllers are installed within luminaires to enable autonomous, individual luminaire control. By making each luminaire a control point, control is highly flexible, responsive, and therefore generally more energy-saving. Serving as a preview for an upcoming Education Express course, this article describes LLLC technology, system types, advantages and disadvantages, studies characterizing energy savings and cost, and what’s familiar and distinctive in regards to design and installation.
The commercial market lighting rebate outlook for 2022 is even stronger than 2021, with relatively stable, substantial rebates promoting adoption of energy-efficient lighting and controls.
In 2020, the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) published ANSI/IES LP-6-20, Lighting Control Systems: Properties, Selection, and Specification. Drawing on the Lighting Controls Association’s Education Express offering as a primary source, this 111-page Lighting Practice and American National Standard provides an excellent foundation for designing with lighting control systems.
According to the AIA Construction Consensus Forecast Panel of leading economic forecasters, nonresidential building construction spending is expected to expand 5.4% in 2022 and strengthen to a 6.1% expansion in 2023.
While networked lighting controls can deliver significant value in both energy and non-energy benefits, a challenge remains in translating these capabilities to one’s applications. What could be done with greater lighting control in my building? How is the system operated to save energy while deriving other benefits specific to my applications? How could the data be used to benefit my stakeholders? To answer this question, let’s look at three theoretical applications.