An Engineer's Impression of the Lightfair Floor
"There was an overwhelming amount of LEDs (light-emitting diodes)," noted Shawn Good, P.E., L.C., the lighting department manager for Harrisburg, Pa.-based Brinjac Engineering. Good, reviewing the exhibit floor for CSE, had ambivalent feelings about the technology, which indeed did radiate from many booths.
"There was an overwhelming amount of LEDs (light-emitting diodes)," noted Shawn Good, P.E., L.C., the lighting department manager for Harrisburg, Pa.-based Brinjac Engineering.
Good, reviewing the exhibit floor for CSE, had ambivalent feelings about the technology, which indeed did radiate from many booths. "There are some opportunities for LEDs for decorative lighting situations, such as restaurants and the like. And there's a lot that can be done on the civil side, such as lighting bridges. But much of this is not very useful right now, and the market's a little exaggerated." (See Technology in Action, pg. 50, for a case study using LEDs for theater house lighting.)
Elsewhere, Good was taken by the whole debate between high-intensity discharge lamps and T5-HOs. "Both have their place in the industry," he said.
T5-HOs are being strongly promoted as a lighting solution in high-bay and warehouse settings. But Good, who authored an article on the technology within the context of underfloor air systems ( CSE 02/02 p. 32), notes they still have a long way to go. "It really depends on the space itself. If it's in a warehouse that's not heated, for example, you won't get any light output," he said.
T5s, themselves, have taken a backseat to their hotter cousin, but Good feels they also have their place. In fact, he argues they're a particularly good illumination source for classrooms.
Back to high-bay lighting, the debate between metal halides and another competitor—high-pressure sodium lamps—also facinate Good. He's personally leaning more toward the former, as he says they've made a lot of advances. And while there's no getting around the lack of instant-on and liability in a power outage, these advances, such as better CRIs with new ceramic products, in his mind, are starting to offset the high-pressure sodium's hype as the most efficient light source.
CFLs were also in prominence with lots of new capabilities, such as dimming and switching. "There are so many innovations from the lamp companies that the fixture companies have to catch up."
But one product that Good thought was a lacking in display was induction lamps. Just a couple of years ago, he said, they were really the buzz, offering instant-on, a high CRI, long life and fluorescent-style efficiency. "But this year there was hardly anything."