How to succeed with light management

A successful light management system (LMS) will both reduce energy costs and benefit the occupants of a building. Glamox Sales Director Bjørn-Erik Askestad has designed light management solutions for more than 20 years. Here he will answer some of the questions you may have about LMS.

Bjørn-Erik Askestad took on the role as sales director for light management solutions in Glamox in 2017. With more than 20 years of experience from the field, he has a clear notion about what it takes to get a successful light management system in place. 

How do we achieve a functional and user-friendly light management system?
“What we have seen is that it’s important to have clear demarcations of responsibilities between the different systems that will be integrated. To achieve this, one should have a good, written description of who’s in charge of integrating what when it comes to light, heat, ventilation and solar shading. This helps reduce the risk of misunderstandings between the different disciplines.

How do we achieve easy maintenance and stable operation of the lighting installation?
“If you choose a central monitoring system you can fully control different operational parameters like emergency light batteries and the condition of the luminaires. Glamox is also in the process of establishing LMS operations teams in the different markets. When these teams are in place we can offer a service agreement where we monitor your light installation for you. If something happens to a luminaire the team is notified, and we can send out a person to replace it before you even notice that something is wrong.

What kind of energy savings can we expect from a LMS system?
“We know that it’s a lot to gain from adjusting the light according to human presence. In Norway we have a standard saying that offices are occupied around 65 percent of the standard operating time, but recent studies show that the percentage probably is lower. According to numbers collected by the Norwegian telecommunications company Telenor, 30-50 % is more realistic. With light management based on presence it is not uncommon to reduce the energy consumption connected to lighting by around 60 %. If you use daylight detection as well, you get even better numbers. 

We want to keep the expenses related to tenant turnovers down. How can we make sure that the light management system doesn’t break the bank?
“Buildings are becoming ever more dynamic and for many building owners it’s essential to have flexible solutions to keep the costs down when changes to the layout is required. If you choose a central monitoring system you get a solution which can be easily adapted to new needs. A quick programming job is enough to change the necessary parameters to adapt the lighting solution to new purposes and patterns of use. Glamox can also assist you with the programming if needed.

We are making plans for a new building. How can we ensure a LMS solution that will cover the needs we have 10 years from now?
“If you know that the use of the building will change it is wise to invest in flexibility. With a central monitoring system, you don’t have to make changes room by room, you can easily control the lighting installation from one location. Another system that offers high flexibility is the KNX system. Glamox KNX it is possible to also include other functions like heating and ventilation.” 

Is it possible to achieve a cost efficient light management solution in a renovation project?
"If you choose a wireless light management system you get a system that is very flexible and easy to install. Since all the light management technology is integrated into the luminaires you don’t have to worry about adding extra data cables.”  This will reduce the cost of the installation significantly.” 

We often hear the term Internet of Things mentioned in connection with light management.  What is the link? 
“Internet of Things is simply speaking what you get when different devices are set up to communicate with each other through the internet. Since our light management systems use a cloud-based solution to send and receive data from the luminaires, one can say that they belong within the IoT definition. This feature makes it possible to, among other things, monitor the emergency lighting installation and the energy consumption. Since luminaires usually are placed where there are people, it is makes sense to use this infrastructure to include other types of functionality.” 

What can Glamox offer in terms of IoT solutions? 
“We can connect the devices our customers want to include in an IoT solution. We think that the demand for things like asset tracking – solutions that monitor the whereabouts of important assets in a building – is on the rise. This technology can be used for purposes like tracking medical equipment in a hospital or wheelchairs in an airport. Indoor navigation systems is another IoT application we see coming. The lighting grid is an ideal infrastructure for these types of solutions.” 

Why is LMS such an important priority to Glamox?
“We want to offer complete systems rather than just luminaires. Earlier, light management systems have sometimes been a source of conflict because the demarcations of responsibilities have not been clear. Now our customers can choose only to deal with us. This means that there are fewer parties involved in a contract, quality we’ve received good feedback on.”

On which level can we expect Glamox to be involved in a  LMS system?
“On the level our customers want us to. We do everything from designing to programming and operating the system. But we can also supply solutions with luminaires and LMS components which are then commissioned by an external programmer.”  

 What kind of knowledge do I need to procure a LMS solution?
“It is important to know the functions of the different parts of the buildings. Glamox aims to be a competent partner both when it comes to systems and functionality. We are used to working with short function descriptions and have built up competence on how to solve different buildings. We know what it takes to create good LMS solutions for classrooms, office landscapes, healthcare institutions and industrial facilities.”