The Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has launched a new collaborative initiative, the Lighting Energy Alliance, to increase the benefits of lighting while reducing its environmental and monetary costs. Member utilities and efficiency agencies will direct the work of the Alliance in order to produce the information needed to effectively reduce lighting energy use. The charter members are Efficiency Vermont, National Grid and Energize Connecticut.
“There has never been a greater need for research on how to improve lighting efficiency without sacrificing quality,” said Dan Mellinger of Efficiency Vermont. Lighting accounts for approximately 18 percent of electricity use in the United States, and therefore has a significant role to play in energy efficiency efforts.
“Traditionally, efficiency programs have focused on light source efficacy improvements. However, with recent legislative and market changes, efforts will need to be redirected to more advanced efficiency measures to continue making gains,” said Edward Bartholomew of National Grid.
“More than ever, efficiency programs need to have a clear understanding of what lighting options are the most effective and will provide high-quality lighting for users. Consumers are feeling overwhelmed by the wide range of new lighting options,” said Sam Fankhauser of Energize Connecticut.
The Lighting Energy Alliance will meet the needs of its members through product testing, field evaluations, laboratory research, education and other methods. The Alliance’s work will span a wide range of topics, likely to include lighting controls, efficient light sources, daylighting, lighting design and human factors. The Alliance is uniquely positioned by being at the LRC because it can tie into the leading research being conducted in light and health, transportation lighting and safety, solid-state lighting and other areas.
“The Lighting Energy Alliance has the ability to perform the original lighting research that is critically needed right now,” said LRC Director of Energy Programs Jeremy Snyder, who is leading the Alliance.
Snyder is currently seeking organizations interested in joining the Lighting Energy Alliance; for details please visit http://www.lrc.rpi.edu/