> FOCUS LIGHTING FOR TOMORROW
Another emerging control capability that may become common is the ability for lighting to interact with individual users
through a range of inputs, including touch, mobile devices, cameras, sound and proximity sensors. As these capabilities become
more economical, designer thinking will transcend the notion
of lighting control as saving energy in the office and supporting
visual needs in the conference room. Imagine illuminated environments that are flexible and responsive to occupants.
Another control capability being pioneered today is using
LED lighting for communication. Digital lighting control
enables two-way communication, acting on command inputs
from multiple devices while providing feedback on status.
This can be used for energy management, maintenance, per-
formance optimization and security across spaces, buildings,
campuses and entire cities. LED technology offers the ability to
embed data directly into the light beam, allowing spaces to talk
to users through messages sent to their mobile phones. Korean
supermarket chain Emart is already using this capability to
guide shoppers around their stores and alert them to discounts.
Additional capabilities involve integration of equipment
into luminaires that can respond to and communicate sound,
monitor carbon dioxide levels and enact security, resulting in
a layer of infrastructure that is highly responsive to individual
and public needs. As a result, LED lighting may become part
of the infrastructure for the Internet of Things, and LED retrofits may serve as an important vector for introducing this
infrastructure into existing buildings.
The integration of muscular control capabilities in everyday lighting systems will necessitate the delivery of design and
construction services that are more sophisticated and closely
related across the supply chain. Advancing capabilities will
be aligned with customer needs, though customers may not
understand their opportunities. The need to educate the end-user about lighting, already vital, will increase in importance.
No. 5: Health outcomes may enter the
value proposition of lighting designs
Light produces physiological, as well as psychological, responses
in humans. Research into these links is providing valuable information that may affect future best practices and result in lighting
systems tailored to support performance and human health.
A range of issues are involved, including the distinctive
needs of the aging eye, circadian health, the positive effects of
daylight, and color. Lighting conditions could be tailored in a
workspace to the age of the user. Color and intensity could be
adjusted in a classroom to encourage alertness or calm. Office
lighting could be programmed to imitate the qualities of daylight across its daytime cycle.
While it’s difficult to speculate what role health will play in
lighting of the future, the important thing is our understanding of light and health is increasing along with our capabilities
to implement health-supportive lighting solutions. Connecting these dots to implement best practices will be challenging
because many factors are involved—e.g., light level, spectrum,
duration of exposure, proper light/dark patterns—and people
should be treated as individuals, not populations.
How soon is the future?
Once a staid industry, the pace of change in lighting is accelerating, requiring more adaptation. As new players enter, it brings a
sense of speed and urgency. Still, change takes longer in lighting than many other industries. The once-envisioned future is
already upon us. The trends are already in place, their trajec-tories established. How far they go, and how fast, remains to be
determined, as does who will win and lose from this change.
Industry players that keep pace, and service providers that keep
abreast of new developments, will be most likely to succeed as
the speed of light accelerates.
DILOUIE, L.C., a lighting industry journalist, analyst and marketing
consultant, is principal of ZING Communications. He can be reached at
WHAT WILL LIGHTING SYSTEMS
LOOK LIKE IN 2020?
“Every lighting solution will be LED, and every lighting solution
will offer some type of automated intelligence. The basic roles
of manufacturers, specifiers and distributors will remain. More
contractors and even distributors will develop their own design
and specifying capabilities.”
—Greg Merritt, vice president, marketing, lighting, Cree Inc.
“In addition to the majority of lighting systems being LED-based,
we believe lighting systems will become a ceiling network. LED
fixtures and controls will illuminate when needed, while sensing
environmental parameters that deliver desired outcomes, delight
users and optimize assets. The entire value chain will become
more sophisticated and require a stronger integration between
building owners, architects, engineers and all the providers to
effectively deliver a simple-to-use integrated system.”
—Jaime Irick, general manager, North America Professional Solutions, GE Lighting
“LED lighting is moving our industry in multiple ways.
Movement in terms of lighting quality, intelligent responses and
new information technologies in which light will form a bridge
between our physical and our digital world are significant.
Quality in terms of the vividness of colors and the consistency
of white color temperature are next steps, where we look at
the value of proper lighting within the space—not just the cost
of operating the lighting system. Moving from static choices
for color and quantity of light into dynamic environments where an intelligent
luminaire responds and delivers the right spectrum and amount of light for the
user. This added intelligence and ability to communicate increasingly enables
lighting equipment to be a managed asset within a facility.”
—Steve Lydecker, senior vice president, technology solutions, Acuity Brands Lighting
THE FUTURE OF LIGHT