THE SHIFT in the lighting controls sector from conventional wired systems to wireless will continue to accelerate in 2019, a top executive from market leader Lutron has predicted.
David Ribbons, sales director for Lutron in Europe, the Middle East and Africa, says the trend will increasingly be felt in the office and residential markets.
‘There’s a huge amount of people taking wireless systems’ with many different protocols such as Bluetooth Mesh, Zigbee and Lutron’s own Clear Connect system all vying for dominance.
Much of it is being driven by demand for dynamic lighting in offices. ’There’s a lot of buzz about human-centric lighting and comfort in the workspace’, said Ribbons.
‘Whenever you’re talking about human-centric lighting there’s an element of control and Lutron is working very hard to work with manufacturers to control their lights to create that environment’.
Speaking at the LuxLive exhibition at London ExCeL, Ribbons said the show was the company’s main launch pad for 2019. ‘It’s got the right clients coming so it’s very important for Lutron to be here and present at the show’.
The American firm introduced two retrofit wireless systems – ‘more in the affordable end’ says Ribbons ‘we’re usually in the high end’ – one for the office sector and one for residential.
Vive has been designed to manage lighting across any number of commercial operations: offices, education, healthcare, leisure and hospitality.
Installation times of the wireless system are estimated to be 70 per cent faster than conventional wired systems, and it’s scalable.
What might start as a single office or executive meeting room can be expanded to an entire department, office floor or a whole building. And the technology is there to encompass a multi-building estate.
The Vive system includes all of the tools that are a prerequisite for good energy control. A range of sensing tools provides automatic control of lighting via occupancy sensors and daylight measurement, and the software also allows demand response during times of peak usage.
The Vive system can be matched to the main control protocols – switching/DALI/0-10V and contact enclosure outputs or BACnet for integration. Programming can be done using any handheld smart device, via the unique Vive wireless hub.
The principle behind RA2 Select is that it can be installed by electricians and programmed by homeowners with no need for a Lutron engineer to commission the system.
The hardware consists of wireless dimmers and switches, programmed to receive signals from Lutron’s Pico wireless remote controls and other smart devices.
Via the main repeater, the lighting can be programmed from a smart device via a free downloadable app.
The app provides individual light circuit (zone) control or full scene-setting, including an option for window blinds that can be incorporated into the overall control package.
Lutron also offers a range of sensors that are designed to identify when a room is empty or occupied.
The RA2 Select can also connect to other in-home smart controls, including the proprietary voice-command services like Amazon Alexa, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, environmental controls such as Honeywell, Nest and entertainment controls such as Sonos.
In the 2018 Lux Awards – which took place on the second day of LuxLive – the RA2 Select received a commendation in the controls product of the year category while the Vive was also shortlisted.
- LuxLive 2019 takes place at ExCeL London on Wednesday 13 November and Thursday 14 November 2019. Entry is free if you pre-register. View more details and register HERE.