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lamp lifetime of up to 12 years. Inspired by the Japanese sun shell, the

Serenga Sun-Lite recessed downlighter is discreet, completely unobtrusive and good looking enough to make emergency lighting part of the overall lighting scheme. For areas where recessing isn’t a viable option, the company also offers a surface mounted range developed for use on solid ceilings. Stewart

Langdown, business

development manager at Tridonic, says the increasing sophistication of emergency lighting systems means that specifiers need to take account of many different factors to ensure the end user gets best value. There are now many more systems available that will automatically test emergency lighting, and it’s important to ensure that such systems address all of the relevant criteria. ‘These include issues such as the compatibility of the control gear with modern light sources like LEDs, the level of overall controllability and whether the system is stand-alone or integrated with other lighting controls - and there are various sustainability considerations too, as well as issues such as choice of light source and batteries, which can also have an impact on the design of the emergency luminaire. And the fact of the matter is that not all emergency lighting controls are equal; some offer considerably greater functionality and ease of use than others,’ explains Langdown.

‘Various self-testing systems offer

different levels of functionality so it’s useful to be aware of some key points,’ highlights Langdown. ‘For example, the self-testing function needs to be easy for maintenance staff to use. The important thing here is that the ways that status is indicated are very clear with no room for misinter-pretation. Another factor is

convenience. One of the required tests is a weekly 30-second test to establish and confirm the func- tionality of the unit, battery and lamp. However, this can be inconvenient for the occupier so it’s useful to be able to pre-programme each unit to run the test at a dif-

ferent time, to avoid all units testing at once. Ideally, the unit will delay the test until the normal lighting supply has been switched off for longer than two minutes – minimising the risk of the test being carried out while the occupier is present. In the event that the supply is permanently connected or the lights are left on permanently the unit should ‘force’ a function test after a further 21 hours.’ As noted, self-testing takes some of the

pressure off the maintenance team but there is still a requirement for a visual check to determine whether the emergency lighting unit has indicated a fault. ‘It makes sense to take advantage of the recent advances in controls networking, by integrating the emergency lighting testing with the lighting management system. This is a very straightforward process using the popular

Top: Serenga LED range from Thomas & Betts. Right & below: Tridonic offers a broad range of emergency lighting units.


Emergency Lighting Products 01403 786 601

Emergi-lite (Thomas & Betts) 0113 281 0600 ICEL 020 8677 0718 Orbik 01922 743 515 Tridonic UK 01256 374 300


DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface) protocol,’ continues Langdown. The DALI system allows luminaires to be addressed individually, so that detailed information can be monitored for each fitting. In addition to standard information such as indicating faults on the lamp, control gear or battery, the system can provide information on, for example, the device status, type of lamp and type of emergency unit and battery. As a result, with the emergency lighting linked to a DALI lighting management system, information on the operating status can be displayed centrally together with the precise address. Any faults can then be corrected efficiently with no need for maintenance staff to patrol the building, resulting in even greater savings in terms of time and maintenance costs. For peace of mind, make sure the manufacturer is a member of ICEL. If emergency lighting isn’t up to scratch then it could mean life or death in the event of an emergency.


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