LEDs offer more efficient lighting with enhanced management

5th August 2015
Nat Bowers

It is now widely accepted that regardless of the building's purpose, changing from a fluorescent to LED based lighting solution is the way forward for both new build and refurbishment schemes. The speed at which this acceptance has happened has taken both observers of, and suppliers and manufacturers in, the industry by surprise.

The upside of this is that there are opportunities for those organisations that are willing to embrace this new technology and the diverse benefits and flexibility that it brings.

One area where there is real potential is with the development of new, more sophisticated drivers such as Tridonic's PREMIUM TALEXXdriver series. For some time luminaires have been capable of gathering data but there was no effective or economic means of accessing or using it. Data was gathered for the sake of it but this is changing and the value of the information is being recognised and used by the more forward thinking premises and facilities managers.

This change in the market has been driven by four factors:

  • Ever more stringent standards and regulation aimed at improving both conditions and energy consumption;
  • Demographic change as the younger generation expects connectivity, they do not view it as an optional add-on;
  • Improved environmental and energy awareness; and
  • More sophisticated digital and connection capability via the internet and/or cloud based solutions.

However, the challenge facing many end users hoping to take advantage of this advancement in connectivity is that their current lighting system has only a mains power installation with no network communication. This challenge is very common and until now was very restrictive to an end user who is looking to add additional energy saving routines such as dimming and daylight saving control.

Tridonic's response to this is its ready2mains digital interface, which has been designed to keep pace with the rapid developments in LED technology and offers an extremely high degree of flexibility and which, importantly, uses the existing mains cable for data transfer.

Simon Blazey, Strategic Solutions Sales Manager, Tridonic UK, explains: "Luminaire manufacturers, electrical contractors and potential users can all benefit from the features of this new LED driver series. TALEXXdrivers in the PREMIUM series can adapt to different lighting requirements with a high degree of flexibility either via the familiar 'one4all' interface or via the new digital ready2mains communications interface. This interface enables digital data, such as configuration parameters, to be transferred directly by means of the mains cable. Upgrading an existing non-dimmable luminaire installation to the latest dimmable LED generation is made easier with ready2mains as there is no need for any new cabling in the ceiling."

Another benefit of ready2mains it is the ability to easily configure control gear with manually settable output current and to then integrate it in existing test equipment. One advantage of this approach over the old method of setting the current manually is that data transfer is rapid and much less susceptible to human error. Simple integration in automated workflows results in huge potential cost savings in the production of LED luminaires. Nevertheless, TALEXXdrivers in the PREMIUM series can still be programmed via the established DALI interface and manual resistance plugs may still be used.

The ready2mains gateway is a DALI- addressable device which when deployed onto a site with multiple gateways ensures that these can be linked to provide site wide control of all luminaires with both dimming and energy saving control routines. The Tridonic ready2mains solution is a cost effective way to provide energy saving control where no electrical control infrastructure exists. It has an additional benefit of using the Tridonic one4all driver that is also DALI ready which makes it suitable for any future network upgrade.

With a choice of compact casing designs (C, SR and SC), the most appropriate can be selected for each luminaire. This is of real benefit, particularly in retail applications where space is often tight. For office based applications, linear low-profile designs are a suitable efficiency-based solution as their dynamic operating ranges cover the entire output spectrum with maximum efficiency.

The first products in the PREMIUM series have already been introduced and Tridonic's full range will shortly be on permanent display at The Building Centre in London but in the meantime for more information visit www.tridonic.com.

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