What is important in the lighting industry?

This article develops some elements to be evaluated carefully in case of new lighting system and / or upgrade.

Whether it's a new installation or a renovation or simply maintenance of existing facilities, the employer has the duty to evaluatecarefully the solutions.

When making these assessments, which involve investments, the best possible performance and economic advantages have to be produced.


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Savings on operating costs

Sources life

Saving on maintenance costs

Systems costs

Lighting quality, visual comfort

Quality of light, circadian cycles and seasonality

Lighting architecturalcare


First you’d better do an evaluation of the activities to be carried out in the environment, then characterize lighting aims, taking advantage of the sunlight as much as possible and design an adequate general lighting to be integrated with the local lighting where needed (on the machinefor instance). The first objective is to satisfy the current regulations updating to the production process. Subsequently other macro objectives have to be pursued such as visual comfort and aesthetics care of furnishing light.

Rules of law arecompulsory, and must be observed.

Visual comfort and well-being of working people have been widely developed in recent years. With the LEDs give solutions otherwise impossible. People’shealth (not only for visual comfort but also for the quality of life), and aesthetic care of indoors are distinctive elements that enhance sites, architecture and design. In this way efficiency and effectiveness of the illumination system are evaluated.

The high performing environment in terms of lighting features, sets man in the best position to operate so that he can get morebenefitsat work by a proper lighting.

After establishing the minimum level of illumination in the different production areas, the right typologyis chosen. Normally the light filters through the windows with a main horizontaldistribution,while skylights and light fixtures have mainly a vertical distribution, even with all the possible variants of the angle of emission of the light cone. When too much natural light is distributed horizontally (it comes from the windows) the visual comfort decreases since it causes glares and reflections on shiny surfaces, that is why they are largely filtered reducing effectivelythe amount of natural light even when it is available. In this case,integrativeartificial light is necessary and important even during the day.

 dynamic light for office natural light emulation


Each company is responsible for ensuring the safety of the workers. The analysis of risks related to the activities performed and evaluated at worst, means that the measures taken are appropriate to the situation for every working environment. Lighting plays an important role in the assessment. The first characteristic relating to lighting deals with the amount of light emitted relating to the activities to be performed, to ensure the operator an excellent view even in the smallest details. A sufficient level of comfort is designed to reduce and / or delay the side effects of fatigue as a result of their activities.

The LED technology allows the expansion of the amount of characteristics of light to control, in order to increase the level of safety and reduce the risk of non-compliance of the process. The non-compliance process depending on a wrong illumination, when not dependent on an inadequate equipment, is an important indicator of risk of workplace accidents.

The operator carrying out a task with insufficient level of attention is induced to commit mistakes. This is often directly caused by fatigue and / or by a condition of critical visibility which can be corrected by an adequate lighting. Every human mistake increases the chances that there might be an accident at work in addition to a damage to the product. Thanks to the proper management of the colors and intensity of light,  a greater attention and a more efficient dynamic activityare stimulated, due to the increased focus and concentration that the operator shall implement in response to the type of light. Increasing inducedattention directly strikes the risk of error in the process and reducing errors involves a drastic reduction of the possible risks of accidents. The increased attention in the initial stage of the activity is sustained throughout the day thanks to the variation of the color of the light. In the evening the workerstops working with the obvious feeling of the need to slow down and enjoy a well-deserved relaxation and entertainment that distracts him from the fatigue accumulated during the dayencouraging a good rest during the night and the ability to regenerate the energies for the next day.

As the light concerns, the level of security increases with simple parameters appropriately controlled and managed.



The technological research urges to produce even more efficientlight sources, able to transform the energy into light normally defined in lumens per watt. This makes lighting bodies efficientand follows the principle of saving that is we would have less and less energy needed to produce the luminous fluxfor the same amount of light produced. It still holds the trend of Moore's Law where in microelectronics, every 18 months you double the amount of transistors in the same area of ​​the electronic components and their performance, reducing costs. The technological innovations improving the yields of the components, reduce the side effects. For every watt of power used to produce light, the amount transformed into light increases and leads to a reduction of the power converted into heat generated by the LEDs. The heat must be dissipated thus, increasing the efficiency of the LEDs also results in savings on the finished product. This also brings benefits to the duration of the lighting fixtures. The power supplies are important and help to increase the reliability and performance of the systems. The power supplies used must have the control of the PFC (power factor correction), a system that allows you to absorb current with sinusoidal mode, thus solving peak current consumption that can rise problems in the distribution of energy. Another important parameter to check is the THD (Total Harmonic Distortion). Together these two parameters allow high transferyields from the electricity to the light obtained.



Luminaires require minimal maintenance during their lives. Power supply replacementwill be done as it has a shorter life than that the LED’s one, even if new technologies are implementing on the improvementof the life expectancy of the power supplies.Dust cleaning is also done when in an dirty environment. So there is a big difference in terms of maintenance costs by comparing the LEDlighting to traditional sourceslighting.In critical application cases, where maintenance forces to stop the production process, the risk of stopping the production process, in order to make the extraordinary maintenance, is eliminated avoiding unexpected costs.



The life of the source is another achievement due to LEDs. Thanks to their characteristics of solid statesource,the junction of the LED diode has a very slow degradation in efficiency in time and as long as there the junctionexists,this emits light when crossed by current. At end of their life, traditional light sources are no longer able to emit light.One the other hand, LEDslife is consideredover when the efficiency of the luminous flux is lost and a source that continues to produce lightgoes on.



Systems made with LED light fixtures have higher initial costs compared to the ones built with traditional light fixtures for several reasons:

1)LEDs to produce the luminous flux equivalent to traditional sources are more expensive, even if new technologies are evolving bringing substantial increases in yields and consequent decreases in side effects.

2) LEDs should be powered with constant current and carefully controlled, as they are very sensitive to variations of current also for very short times (microseconds).

3) LEDs must be well controlled in temperature by dissipating the heat generated by the LEDs, the average life decays rapidly if you exceed the nominal value specified by the manufacturer.

4) the most important applications require different types of LEDs simultaneously to obtain architectural results not achievable with traditional light sources.

5) Dynamic applications that want to reproduce the natural light in the environment, require larger quantities of LEDs in order to reach high intensities and with different colors. Their mixing produces the desired effect to approach the natural source.

6) Applications which support the quality of life, such as the reinforcement of circadian cycles, have a use of mixtures of LED intensity at various wavelengths, as at the previous point but managed with different aims.

The points 4,5,6 are lighting fixtures that cannot be achieved with conventional light sources and therefore their costs are not comparable; they are new opportunities improving different motivations. They usually add benefits such as productivitygrowth, the reduction of non-compliance process and the drastic reduction of accidents. These elements are very important even if they are notoften consideredthat’s why the investment is worth. Furthermore, the dynamic management does not normally keep the LED on at 100% of its potential and this produces a lower thermal stress delaying its yield decay. The average life of the lighting fixtures can become greater than the led life assured by the producer because stated on the basis of the rated power.



The characteristics that determine the visual comfortare an important factor for the effectiveness of lighting. You can design light fixtures that have large areas of light emission at low luminance. The large emission surface illuminates the environment well without fatiguing. You can look directly at the source and do not have the slightest disturbance because the luminance is very low. The luminance level avoids having low saturation effects of light and reflections forcing the eye to take cover from the intensity compromising a good vision. A comfortable environment does not make the lighting fixtures be seen and LEDs can be hidden very easily.



Fixtureswith very different mechanical, optical and lighting engineering characteristics can be made thanks to the small size of LEDs. This increases the freedom indesign: creating lighting independently from visible luminaires or showing them in their best aesthetic qualities. Current technology offers a lot of freedom in design solutions. For their performances, LEDs are well suited to projects for indoor and outdoor applications and spectacular architecture like no other light source, with the advantage of conditioning the environment to the point of furnishing it with the light itself.



The quality of light has to be seen as a reproduction of natural light by artificial systems. This implies the capacity to emit artificial light having the same relationships of the intensities at various wavelengths of light as occurs in nature. Only a part of the wavelengths of light are visible and therefore we refer to the visiblewavelengths. However there are not visible wavelengths but they contribute to have special effects on the photo luminescent materials. There are several techniques to usein order to obtain this spectrum. The most common is the use of different sources to adjacent wavelengths, the sum of which is close to the desired result. This is easily accomplished with several differentwavelengthsLEDschannels easy to control.

In nature, the intensities of the various wavelengths are not constant over time, but vary cyclically during the day depending on the rotation that the earth makes around the sun and the tilt position of the Earth's orbit which determines the seasons.

Also the variation in time involves an important feature of the quality of light. These variations give rhythm and synchronize the activities of living beingsboth inthe 24 hours cycle and in seasons.

In industries and offices, the use of dynamic lighting is designed to strengthen and support people in their activities, rising  attention, increasing activities and the capacity to tolerate fatigue. During the day you synchronize activities interspersed with periods of relaxation and rest, as normally happens in nature, with significant benefits for the industry and for workers. These are otherremarkableadvantages for companies: the reduction in process errors, the drastic reduction in the risk of accidents, operative costs reduction. Also workers have benefits: the satisfaction resulting from their activities, the ability to relax and rest better immediately after work, the tendency to feel good at work which increases the loyalty of workers.