2018 Trends

What are going to be the key trends in the Lighting industry in 2018? We speak to some industry experts who predict how the lighting industry will evolve in the next year. 

Pietari Tuomisto, Product Owner, Embedded Products, Helvar

“Organisations are investing in smart technology and reaping the benefits. One area of particular interest is lighting control. Lighting consumes up to 40 percent of energy in a building and a lighting control system is an effective way to both reduce this consumption level, and manage the ambience for maximum wellbeing. The key is to finding a blend of natural and artificial light sources to provide considerable increases in energy efficiency.

One way to achieve this blend is through ‘daylight harvesting’ a description given to the exploitation of natural daylight entering a room and the subsequent reduction of associated artificial lighting.

Daylight harvesting can be achieved by incorporating sensors alongside luminaires in a lighting scheme. Lighting sensors come in two guises; PIR (passive infrared) for presence detection, and photocell for controlling ambient light levels. An option is a combined PIR/photocell sensor otherwise known as a multisensor.

A multisensor, such as the new Helvar 321, monitors the level of natural light available in a room or corridor, and can adjust the artificial light level accordingly. The light sensor measures reflected light from the surface directly below it and uses this information to maintain a constant light level by adjusting the lamp outputs.

The integrated photocell sensor can dim the lights gradually when it detects increasing levels of natural light, and as natural light decreases, raise the artificial light level. The sensor ensures that the lighting is perfectly optimised to consume only as much energy as required.

A further way to reduce the lighting system’s use of energy is by ensuring that artificial lighting is only operating in those areas in which the building is occupied. The PIR function in a multisensor will automatically turn the lights on when a room is occupied and off when it is unoccupied.”

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Andrew Cronin, Nualight, Vice president – Product Research & Development

“The lighting industry as a whole continues to recognise that end users are becoming ever more receptive to push notifications and information on mobile devices. We therefore expect to see continued hype in 2018 for IoT, Beacons and Li-fi enabled luminaires as vehicles to create customer engagement touchpoints. Controversially, within the grocery retail sector, we believe lighting manufacturers are not best placed to lead these new customer engagement technologies or platforms, in fact we would go so far to say that technology cannot be substituted for innovative store design and exceptional service.

Even in this digital age, customers expect a quick, non-personal transaction online but expect quite the opposite in store. Evidence is strong that brick-and-mortar stores will not just survive but continue to grow, this can be seen through the recent investments from European discounters and notable online retailers such as Amazon. Grocery store retail will continue to change into more intimate and personalised experiences, which so far, are impossible to replicate online. Sensory experiences such as the magnetising smell of freshly baking bread, or the taste of a “try before you buy” fruit or cheese promotion will be the development path for fresh food store formats. Lighting can hugely influence these sensory experiences and therefore we believe grocery retailers will continue to invest in retail display lighting to help promote and accentuate their products. Energy savings will become less of a decisive purchasing factor, whilst luminaire quality, maintenance and robustness will return as higher priorities for lighting buyers.”

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John Phillips, Managing Director, Optelma Lighting

“It seems likely there will be a renewed push to harvest daylight and minimise artificial light, driven by both an environmental need and an aesthetic trend. Creating environments that are either daylit or appear as though they are, through new techniques in artificial lighting and the careful positioning of luminaires and  amps, will be a major trend for 2018.

These developments in lighting technology, will hopefully be complemented by a drive towards lighting design research, so that the use of artificial light becomes more intelligent. Research into the science of light and its interaction with humans (for example into circadian rhythms and the pineal gland), will act as a catalyst to encourage more intelligent use of lighting controls.

The WELL Building Standard is certainly a step in the right direction, pushing workplaces and architectural environments to be more humancentric, as well as efficient. So, rather than focusing solely on an office achieving BREEAM, the design team would also aim to achieve WELL. Access to daylight and the relationship between humans and nature will be carefully considered to benefit the health of occupants. Artificial lighting will need to be dynamic, mirroring daylight as much as possible. This could see the industry moving further away from Cat A fitting, and towards products, such as artificial skylights and back-lit ceilings.”

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Adrian Dennis, Managing Director, Zeta Specialist Lighting

“2018 looks set to be an exciting year as more and more organisations across all sectors realise the benefits of energy-efficient and cost-effective LED and solar-powered lighting solutions.

The railway sector in particular is one where Zeta has seen increased demand for LED technology and we predict that this trend will continue through next year. With goals to improved external and internal lighting levels at stations, depots and offices; reduce energy consumption, lower maintenance costs and minimise their overall carbon footprint, a number of train operators including Chiltern Railways, have replaced legacy lighting with energy- and cost-efficient LEDs. Zeta is currently working on a number of projects in this sector which will be completed in the first half of 2018.

Logistics and manufacturing companies especially within the food and drink arena, are also investing in environmentally-friendly LED technology. With extensive experience providing solutions that have enabled clients to upgrade legacy energy-hungry lighting in distribution centres nationwide, for 2018, Zeta has partnered with Carbonlights Solutions to offer a range of innovative solutions tailored to meet the unique requirements within clean/high hygiene environments.

Councils nationwide are installing low-energy LED street lights and Zeta’s SmartScape range of street and amenity lighting solutions have been one of the company’s biggest successes to date. As we enter 2018, we will be fulfilling a number of tenders and we expect to see further significant growth in this sector, particularly on the back of the recent launch of the SmartScape Macro which is designed specifically for distributor and traffic routes.

Zeta’s mainstay is in solar-powered solutions and we have a strong portfolio of systems for the signage sector. Sign-makers nationwide are utilising these solutions across a number of applications, to retro-fit legacy signs to add impact where there is no mains connection, as well as ensure new projects are quick, easy and cost-effective to install.

Finally, one key trend we see continuing is a requirement to retain rather than replace current housings, when upgrading to LED lighting. Many organisations are looking for tailor-made solutions to suit their needs, and as a UK manufacturer, we’re well positioned to create bespoke solutions that perform from both an aesthetic and functional perspective.”

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For more comments from industry professionals, read our feature in the Dec 17/Jan 18 issue of A1 Lighting Magazine here: http://flickread.com/edition/html/5a30556826ff1#18

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