Kiran Laxman, Senior Manager, Strategy Development
The LED evolution is driving a host of new advanced digital lighting applications from high CRI, tunable white to the emerging area of Human Centric Lighting (HCL). While we are still in the early stages of HCL, we are seeing signs of early adoption as color control and task tuning emerge as specification requirements especially in areas such as healthcare, education, and retail. More research is coming out, and we are already anticipating significant demand for this type of lighting, to enhance user experiences in spaces where people live, learn, work and heal.
As specifiers and designers get more comfortable with the capabilities of LED light sources, interoperability with controls is considered one of the biggest challenges impeding the full adoption of advanced lighting designs and sequences of operation. Often, when lighting designers are putting together advanced lighting schemes, it involves using different controls and technologies to ensure they integrate and interact seamlessly to provide quality lighting. This gets more complicated when additional layers like color temperature control, tunable white, and warm dimming features are included. The problem with many of the choices available today is they are confined to proprietary control systems with limited options of light sources for specific niche applications. These control systems are also highly complex.
Accelerating the widespread adoption of advanced LED lighting and paving the way for HCL requires a controls ecosystem where lighting designers can pick and choose as they design their solutions. We believe in this approach, and we have solidified our strategy/approach/mission/vision in this area through our recent partnership with Lumenetix. Providing access to a broad ecosystem of “color + control” enabled lighting fixtures that are also simple and cost-effective, eases industry pain points.
Providing a controls ecosystem is just one big step in moving HCL forward. However, there are technology challenges that the ecosystem still needs to address before color tuning is ready for widespread adoption. These challenges range from precision LED dimming to maintaining color temperature over the lifetime of a light source to the lack of industry standards on how controls and light sources interface to ensure compatibility, reliability and performance.
These are definitely exciting times for the industry as it searches for the ideal solution in an era of advanced digital lighting. The pace of innovation being unleashed through the collaboration of lighting and controls manufacturers promises a new age of lighting design and user experience.
Kiran Laxman is the Senior Manager for Strategy Development for the WattStopper product line of Legrand’s Building Control Systems division. Kiran is an experienced marketing professional focused on strategies and products that address the convergence of electrical, data and energy management infrastructure for commercial buildings. He has held multiple roles within Legrand. Project highlights include incubating the Electric Vehicle Charging Station product line for Legrand and growing the Wattstopper lighting controls product line across healthcare, education and commercial office markets primarily through the electrical distribution channel.
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