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Energy Efficiency


ensure that the LED light source and its driver match in terms of forward voltage and drive current. If control systems are not properly matched with the fixtures being used, this can lead to a lower overall efficiency. Helvar focuses on the compatibility of the LED driver with any additional control equipment, such as sensor and lighting control solutions, to ensure the best possible efficiency from an installation. “Always think about energy saving from a system perspective, it is no good having an efficient LED source if the LED driver gear is not efficient,” explains van der Kolk. So what are the best ways to ensure the correct driver for an installation or retrofit project? The best thing to do, according to van der Kolk, is to look at the entire system rather than focusing just on the LED itself. “Check datasheets for practical advice like maximum cable lengths, wiring connections and controls requirements.” In closing, van der Kolk suggests that if in doubt, always contact the manufacturer for advice, or even conduct a compatibility test to be sure the products being used are going to be as efficient as possible once installed. Although LEDs have made a real ripple in the lighting industry, they are not the only option for cutting energy consumption. A number of companies are already beginning to invest in OLED technology, which is set to make waves of its own. A number of companies, including Toshiba’s Lighting Systems UK, have invested in the technology.


OLED has the ability to be lit across a wide surface area, making it suitable for a number of applications, particularly things like backlighting or sign illumination. Thinner and less obtrusive lighting designs can be achieved using OLEDs, making the technology versatile and efficient. “Basically, OLED really opens the door wide to creativity and innovation within lighting design,” explains Edward Lees, Product Manager at Toshiba Lighting Systems UK. “OLED is such a recent development that the technology is still in its infancy, so it remains


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quite costly. However, it’s only 17 years since the white LED was introduced and we already have exceptional, revolutionary lighting which can far exceed today’s conventional light source performance benchmarks - OLED could develop at an even more accelerated rate.” Where large spreads of light are required, OLED could prove to be the perfect efficient solution. It is not just members of the lighting industry that need to be sure they’re educated on the subject of energy efficiency, it is also important to ensure that end users are educated on the importance and implementation of efficient lighting systems, with everything from street lighting to schools looking to benefit from


efficient lighting systems. As one of the UK’s leading equipment leasing companies for schools, Utility Rentals is partnering with Energys Group, who are specialists in energy efficient retrofit technologies, and Smart Eco Energy Ltd, in order to help schools to reduce their lighting energy costs. One of the key elements of this will be Save It Easy®, a patented plug in adaptor that will allow schools to replace older fluorescent lamps with more energy efficient equivalents. This will mean that schools will be able to utilise existing light fittings and wiring, reducing the disruption commonly associated with updating a lighting scheme. It is hoped that the Save It Easy® solution will save schools more than enough to cover the cost of the annual rental, providing an eco-friendly solution on a budget-friendly basis. Energy efficiency is something that we as an industry and as a planet have to take seriously. Therefore, it’s great to see the hard work being done to develop more sustainable lighting solutions and to understand the most efficient use of products.


{ Contact


MITIE T: +44 (0)117 970 8800 www.mitie.com


Harvard Engineering T: +44 (0)113 383 1000 www.harvardeng.com


Helvar T: +44 (0)1322 222 211 www.helvar.com


Toshiba Lighting Systems UK T: +44 (0)1932 841 600 www.toshiba.co.uk/lighting


Energys Group T: +44 (0)1306 621 000 www.energysgroup.com


For more information on Save It Easy® please visit www.saveiteasy.co.uk


www.a1lightingmagazine.com


Left: Toshiba is investing in the use of OLED technology as an energy efficient option that would be suitable for a range of applications. Below: Harvard’s CoolLED drivers are designed with efficiency in mind. Bottom: Helvar’s LED drivers are designed with consideration of control elements being used in any one project.


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