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LEDs Light Up University Center

Photonics.com
Jan 2010
URBANA-CHAMPAIGN, Ill., Jan. 22, 2010 — The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign is embarking on a sustainable-energy/energy-saving lighting project at the university’s Krannert Center for the Performing Arts.

The center’s lobby will have nearly 600 solid-state lighting fixtures installed in the 25,000-square-foot space shared by four separate theater and concert venues. For 40 years, this lobby has been illuminated by 625 energy-gulping incandescent light fixtures consuming nearly 573.8 million watts annually. Retrofitting with the new luminaires from Renaissance Lighting of Herndon, Va., will cut energy use by about 460 million watts annually, according to Barry Weinbaum, chief executive officer of Renaissance Lighting.

“By spending less on electricity, and along with the impressive longevity of our luminaires, we expect Krannert Center will realize annual savings greater than $70,000 annually. The quality of the light produced by our fixtures surpasses any incandescent or fluorescent fixture on the market, as each luminaire provides a glare-free, superior light throw and eliminates ‘hot spots.’ Also, our color-changing products provide for both efficiency and creativity unique to the lighting industry,” Weinbaum said.

Krannert Center can anticipate additional savings because solid-state LED luminaires produce virtually no heat below the suspended ceiling where they are installed. By contrast, 90 percent of the energy consumed by incandescent bulbs is in the form of heat rather than light, which in turn increases air conditioning load and related costs. Longevity and reduced maintenance are added bonuses. LED luminaires far outlast their incandescent counterparts, supplying 50,000-70,000 hours of use versus 2,000 hours for incandescent bulbs, thereby eliminating frequent and costly light replacement.

A key feature of the Renaissance Lighting color-changing luminaires is the ability to produce more than 16.5 million different colors, including white. Each fixture incorporates a circular array of red, green and blue LEDs that illuminate in a color-mixing dome before the blended light exits the fixture – a patented design called constructive occlusion. Each fixture can be individually addressed with the entire illuminated space optionally controlled by Renaissance Lighting’s Rhapsody Color Management System.

Half of the project funding is grant money from the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation. The balance of the funding is a seven-year, zero-interest loan from the university’s student sustainability committee, whose income stems from a $2 clean energy fee that students pay every semester.

For more information, visit: www.renaissancelighting.com  


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