August 11, 2022

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Post-LightFair report: Systems and controls update

As our team processed the current journey to the Las Vegas Convention Middle West Corridor for LightFair International’s exhibition (June 21–23, 2022), themes of controls simplification, interoperability, and streamlined devices knowledge emerged from numerous booth visits.

NexGen Energy Systems

It may well seem puzzling to combine discussion about LED motorists and electrical power electronics with lights controls technological innovation. Nevertheless, as we acquired from NexGen Electricity Units CEO and cofounder Dinesh Ramanathan, the latest advancements in energy electronics can deliver decreased expense, a far more compact footprint, lighter product or service pounds, and improved dimming efficiency, for example.

Ramanathan confirmed a retail-design Cree Lights downlight incorporating NexGen’s megahertz-switching-frequency Vertical GaN technology, which makes use of lesser inductor and electromagnetic interference filter (EMI) parts. With about 20W of electricity, the downlight was in a position to complete ~5% measures in dimming effortlessly — without having flicker but with 6% larger effectiveness as opposed to common 16W competitive know-how.

As significantly as the company’s prolonged-expression watch, Ramanathan discussed that in the five many years considering that its founding, NexGen Power Devices has managed to receive a lot more than 100 patents involving system know-how, and device, circuit, and energy systems architecture. The organization strategies to scale its software program-configurable electrical power technological innovation to handle programs from 20W to 200 kW. Over and above general computing and lights methods, this will contain details centers and electric powered automobiles for a more diversified approach to corporation growth.

Viewers can entry an on-desire webinar introduced by purposes engineer Tiziano Pastore on the scalable NexGen Electrical power technologies that resulted in acquiring Helios electrical power modules for SSL methods.

Strength Focus’ EnFocus controls

Even though known for its significant-responsibility and commercial-grade lights, Electrical power Emphasis has made forays into controls, recognizing difficulties that keep on to prevent stop people from seeking complex options.

“Market penetration of [lighting] controls is about 1% with incentives, rebates, and code prerequisites regarded,” senior vice president, merchandise administration and engineering Greg Galluccio stated through our stop by. Even though acknowledging that wi-fi controls have turn into well known in household spaces, professional and industrial conclude end users — these types of as administrators and amenities operators with security issues in educational, healthcare, federal government, and jail environments — are more wary of gadgets that can “forget to pair and reduce relationship,” Galluccio said. Even now, wired-method charges approximated from $7,000 to $10,000 to pull new wiring for person classrooms can be prohibitive, for occasion, and interoperability is a significant concern, he explained.

Strength Aim designed its EnFocus controls and switching technologies to present dimming and coloration tunability — together with guidance for circadian lighting techniques — over present AC mains or wiring operate in new builds. Proprietary waveform engineering cleans up “dirty” 120V input sign, Galluccio said, with a tiny (about 2 in.2) translator module that matches into the driver/controls box and communicates with any 0–10V lighting technique.

In Galluccio’s feeling, “the initial wave of controls was too refined,” overwhelming probable commercial end users with charge and complexity. “Simple, intuitive, and invisible” will get them around, he mirrored.

Toggled builds out controls portfolio

Altair subsidiary Toggled touts its mission as “user-friendly” software-based mostly creating and lights manage methods. Adding to its Toggled iQ lineup of IoT and lighting controls, the organization exhibited its most recent fixture controller. In dialogue with COO Daniel Hollenkamp, he reiterated the accessibility, versatility, and simplicity-of-use pain details — but with the added strain of organizations’ sustainability initiatives and opportunity complications of integrating each lights and setting up methods. “We want to make this less complicated,” he stated. “Less daunting, less difficult to program and implement” for the reason that additional servicing and troubleshooting charges facilities proprietors and operators in equally time and funds, Hollenkamp described.

In 2021, he ongoing, the organization released its Toggled iQ clever developing platform — a “building ecosystem” with immediate-wire LED lighting, sensors, and switches for scalable, finish-to-stop connectivity. Hollenkamp then showed the newly released fixture controller with two 0–10V inputs to regulate dimming and CCT of existing 0–10V dimmable fixtures, communicating with the Toggled iQ platform. “We can aid put into practice daylight harvesting, occupancy detection-dependent management, and scheduled lights applications with this total wise platform” in a charge-effective fashion, claimed Hollenkamp. He pointed out the threaded adapter that simplifies installation of the controller in normal ½-in. knockouts (demonstrated in close by show image).

The controller is intended to be employed as a standalone device or scaled to a whole making network. “This is intelligent and wireless — how it ought to be,” Hollenkamp said. “No tearing down present infrastructure or complex wiring diagrams.”

Persuasive controls chat with Kenall

Final but not the very least, we experienced an intriguing and enlightening chat with BrightStar Award honoree Kenall Lighting’s Nathan Heiking. As we conversed in the media centre about the lights developer’s BrightStar-regarded EnviroPro IN9 natatorium luminaire, LEDs requested about product and application enlargement efforts. Item manager Heiking revealed that Kenall is operating with ex-Motorola workforce contributing their electrical engineering, software package improvement, and wi-fi radio working experience to raise “resources committed to highly developed controls engineering.”

He explained a digital camera-based mostly cloud software underneath development that would combine with pole-mounted lights: an imaging sensor with visible correction optics, as perfectly as a learning algorithm, to resolve digital camera distortion and filter out picture noise, respectively, for integration with out of doors or parking garage lights, for example, to go through license plates and supply other security and controls abilities. “We’re performing it into a more simple wi-fi version at a lower charge – very similar to Bluetooth mesh, but not that protocol,” mentioned Heiking. We search forward to learning a lot more as progress is announced.

 CARRIE MEADOWS is taking care of editor of LEDs Journal, with 20 years’ working experience in organization-to-business enterprise publishing throughout technological know-how marketplaces including solid-condition engineering manufacturing, fiberoptic communications, equipment eyesight, lasers and photonics, and LEDs and lights.


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