A message from the Principal – October 2021 Newsletter

I have often wondered at the way that each of us is unique.  The experts in the field of human genetics repeatedly state that it is in the genes,

Whilst I understand that our DNA has a significant influence, why do some people have a greater desire to study more than others.

My own research into this topic revealed that many studies have been done on the performance of school children from their first day at school through their school years.  It has been show that genetics ie DNA has a 16% influence.  Yes, that is almost 20%!  Now what could the remaining influence be?

It is my contention that teachers play a significant role in each of our formative and later years at school.  Teachers with a poor ability to convey their teaching to the pupils,  especially if those teachers spend a large part of each school day with the class, will certainly not get the best out of the pupils.  The opposite is also true.  A teacher with personality and the ability to present the content in an interesting and stimulating way, will automatically encourage better pupil performance.

The classroom environment must also influence performance.  If a classroom is dull, uninteresting, poorly lit and scruffy or dirty, poor performance and learning will generally result.  On the opposite side of the scale, a properly lit classroom focused for the well-being of the occupants, decorated in a way that creates a comfortable environment for learning, together with a great lively teacher, will without doubt produce great learning results.

I recognise that there are pupils or students who need more encouragement, mentoring, nudging and cajoling than others who simply put there shoulder to the wheel and get on with studying.

This brings me to the reason for addressing this topic.  From the outset when the original course was first introduced as a correspondence course in 2013, I knew from my studies into the development of a correspondence course, that it was reasonable to expect that there would be a dropout rate of around 24%.  Unfortunately, no matter how communicating, mentoring, encouraging and nudging has positive results.  This group has an endless repetoire of excuses for not progressing or succeeding.

The next group of around 13% are the slow but steady students who usually will need to pay for additional time to complete the course.  At the opposite end is the group with a very high and steady work rate who represent 12% of all students.

Thankfully, the remaining 51% make steady progress and are responsive to any communication, mentorship and additional support by their attendance at webinars that we present.

Our results mirror the results detailed in numerous studies on full-time university, correspondence course, part-time and e-learning students.   Essentially, the group of concern to us and in the case of the various studies, is always the dropout group.  It is also interesting that using the reverse Pareto principle, the dropout group represents the 20 of the 80.

We at BHA School of Lighting are constantly trying to find ways to recover those who gave up an also to reduce or minimise the risk of dropouts from occurring.  We devote considerable time to monitoring the progress of every student but with special attention to the group who make slow progress and those who are on the threshold of becoming a dropout statistic!

Now for some positive and exciting news.

My good friend David Gilbey from Italy initiated and idea which he shared with me.  After virtual meetings with David and a guest expert international architect, Arif mehmood, a webinar titled “Lighting Designer collaboration – A Discussion by International Experts” will be presented on 14 October 2021 at 18:00. See the profiles of the presenters/speakers in this Newsletter.  To register for this event, goto https://bhaschooloflighting.clickmeeting.com/

It is also extremely exciting to be going to present two webinars for The Institution of lighting Professionals in the UK.  In support of Women in Lighting, I will co-present a webinar for The ILP Durham, titled “The Fascination of Colour” with Abinaya Jevaraju one of my second year lady students from Kuwait City on 12 October 2021 at 12;00 SAST and then another again for the ILP Durham on 26 October 2021 at 12;00 SAS where I will co-present with Lorrain de Bruyn, a second year lady student from Jiohannesburg, titled “The Intrigue of Colour”.  The only similarity in the title between the two webinars is the word “Colour” and that is where it ends!  The content is very different in each case.  We urge all BHA School of Lighting Student Members of the ILP to register for these events which will be promoted by the ILP and on their website too.  See the Institution news at the end of this newsletter for the links to be able to register.

Stay well, stay safe.  Until next month, cheers!

We would like to welcome the following new students to BHA School of Lighting

  • Emily Rosenbaum, Hawaii lighting Reps, Honolulu, Hawaii, USA – BHASL003C19: Advanced Diploma in Illumination Engineering Course
  • Justin Naidoo, Magnet electrical, Durban – BHASL001C20: Foundation Lighting Course
  • Jeannine Vorster, Gryphon and Co, Cape Town – BHASL003C19: Advanced Diploma in Illumination Engineering Course

Happy Birthday to the following past & present students celebrating their Birthdays this month of October! We hope you all have a memorable day!

  • Emily Rosenbaum, Honolulu, Hawaii – 2 October
  • Martina Mantaras, Montevideo, Uruguay – 4 October
  • Andrew Marshall, East London – 10 October
  • Tammy Maharaj, Stanger – 14 October
  • Jeannine Vorster, Cape Town – 15 October
  • Imagine Rakgakole, Johannesburg – 22 October
  • Brett Urquhart, Cape Town – 24 October

    To our Graduates

  • Erin Jones, Cape Town – 16 October
  • Ryan Jones-Hockley, Johannesburg – 17 October

Our congratulations go out to Mohammad Al Muhanna, Saudi Arabia on passing your first year final examinations and on commencing second year.

The following students are preparing to write their first year examinations.  We wish you success!

  • Oriana Abigail Govindasamy, Cape Town
  • Beth Maina, Nairobi, Kenya
  • Ross Sharp, Cape Town

Meet your Host and the Experts for the next webinar on 14 October 2021


Philip Hammond

Philip Hammond was born in East London, 16 March 1948, was Educated at Cambridge High School and Selborne College ompleted National Service in 1967 and went on to graduate with a B Mil and MMilA.
He married Tish on 17 July 1971 and they have three sons.

Philip received his lighting training with Thorn EMI Lighting (South Africa) (Pty) Ltd and Thorn EMI Lighting (UK) Limited at London Southbank University in 1975 graduating in 1977 as a B Illumination Engineer (I Eng) with Distinction.  He and BHA Lighting have completed more than 4,000 successful lighting projects specialising in lighting design using LED lighting technology since 2007.

He is widely regarded as an authority on the use of LED lighting in all lighting applications with over 50 years of experience and 44 years as a qualified lighting engineer
His extensive travels have taken him all over the world.

He is a member of the Illumination Engineering Society of South Africa and a proud member of The Institution of Lighting Professionals (UK) and was accorded Educator Member status by the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD, Chicago, Illinois, USA)

He is a fully accredited professional illumination engineer in the categories
o  Interior lighting
o  Exterior lighting
o  Street lighting
o  Sport field lighting all categories
o  Specialisation – photometry and illumination education and training
o  Authority to sign-off all lighting designs completed for full SANS, OHS, EN and BS compliance


David Gilbey

David Gilbey is the Founder of d-lighting, independent lighting and visual design. As the world has become more visual David’s theatrical lighting background puts him in a great position to master the artistic and technical aspects of a project.

David has a holistic approach to design and his DNA is to take a story telling approach to lighting design and to try to capture the soul of a project, he has worked on prestigious developments globally. He is a renowned speaker on the international lighting circuit and firmly believes that established lighting designers have a responsibility to mentor and guide the next generation of young lighting designers.

David also believes that it is important to enjoy your work and undertake it with a smile on your face, this enjoyment is the likely hidden catalyst to where the magic happens, along with the power of great ideas.

Arif Mehmood

ARIF MEHMOOD BA(Hons), DipArch, MScArch, RIBA, ARB Director of Architecture

Arif brings more than 35 years of experience in a variety of building types through all stages – from design to handover – across Europe, Far and Middle East.

Arif began his early career with the Richard Rogers Partnership ( now Rogers Stirk Harbour), spent large part of his career with Hopkins Architects and, more recently, with RMJM and SSH in Dubai
where he worked on the following projects:

  • Richard Rogers ( 1986- 88 ) – Billingsgate Market, Lloyds of London
  • Hopkins Architects ( 1988 – 2010) – Bracken House, Glyndebourne Opera, Manchester Art Gallery, Wellcome Trust HQ, Gate Village for Dubai International Financial Centre, Dubai World Trade
    Centre, Nottingham Trent University.
  • RMJM Dubai (2011- 2017) – Hyatt Regency Dubai, and MOI HQ Jeddah.
  • SSH Dubai (2017 – 2021) — Sheraton Taiba in Madina and a five star resort in Yiti, Muscat, Oman.

Arif holds a Bachelor’s Degree and a postgraduate Diploma in Architecture from Demontfort University (UK), as well as a Master’s Degree from the University College of London (Bartlett, UK). He is also a registered Architect with the Architects Registration Board (ARB) of the UK, and a Member of the Royal Institute of British Architects (UK).

Architecture is a collaborative process. Solutions are informed by both an understanding of the client’s Requirements and the context within which the project sits. At an operational level it’s about establishing a robust and a deliverable vision together with timely coordination of the skills necessary to realize it effectively and efficiently.

Over the years, with ever-increasing scale and complexity of the projects, I see myself as a mediator of this process maintaining a balance between the vision and the delivery process.

Events from the ILP

More info here – https://theilp.org.uk/

Join the BHA School of Lighting Alumni and follow us on LinkedIn – https://www.linkedin.com/company/bha-school-of-lighting/

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A technology surfaces that could literally expand the reach of Li-Fi

Engineers are working on something called ‘RIS’ that can minimize line-of-sight requirements. But won’t it also benefit would-be intruders?

With RIS, Li-Fi users won’t have to stay behind the walls. (Image credit: Graphic by Mohamed Hassan via Pixabay; used under free license for commercial or non-commercial purposes.)

We stumbled across a developing technology that has a bit of a science fiction ring but might one day help usher in Li-Fi as a mainstay Internet conduit. The technology is called “reconfigurable intelligent surfaces” (RIS) and its intention is to solve the conundrum that one of Li-Fi’s greatest strengths is also a weakness. Specifically, Li-Fi today requires unobstructed line-of-sight. That is, no object or person must stand between a Li-Fi transmitter and receiver. Line-of-sight is the reason why Li-Fi is generally regarded as highly secure. It is blocked by walls, thus spoiling the day for at least some would-be eavesdroppers.

But the disadvantage of line-of-sight is that it limits the range of transmission. Essentially, users have to be more or less directly under an emitting luminaire, or otherwise in the lightwave’s path.

RIS to the rescue!

A paper published on Cornell University’s non-peer-reviewed arXiv site of scientific articles heralds RIS as a technology that will “not only support blockage mitigation but will also provision complex interactions among network entities, and is hence manifested as a promising platform that enables a plethora of technological trends and new applications.”

Translation: Not only will RIS minimize the need for line-of-sight (i.e., it providers “blockage mitigation”), but it will do even more than that to help make Li-Fi a useful means of communication.

“RIS emerged recently as a revolutionary concept that transfers the physical propagation environment into a fully controllable and customizable space in a low-cost, low-power fashion,” states the paper’s authors, led by Hanaa Abumarshoud, a research fellow in electronic and electrical engineering at Glasgow’s University of Strathclyde. The team includes Harald Haas, co-founder of Edinburgh-based pureLiFi and a professor of mobile communications at the University of Edinburgh.

If you want the technical ins and outs, download the paper here: https://arxiv.org/abs/2104.02390.

In short, RIS can be used in several places in a Li-Fi environment, including in the transmitters, in the receivers, and along the way.

“A RIS comprises a metasurface that can be proactively reconfigured to alter the wireless wave propagation,” the paper explains. “The electromagnetic (EM) response of each RIS element can be adjusted by tuning the surface impedance through electrical voltage stimulation. Based on this newly emerging concept, future wireless networks may utilize the different surfaces and physical objects in the environment as wireless boosters to enhance their operations.”

According to the authors, RIS can help steer light in a particular direction; can redirect it; can amplify it; and can control different wavelengths, an attribute that provides multiplexing benefits.

But if the lightwaves will now reach around corners and so forth, won’t that undermine the security advantages of Li-Fi by making signals available to people who shouldn’t have access to them?

No, say the authors. They claim that RIS-equipped Li-Fi environments “can lead to enhanced physical leader security” in several different ways. For example, somehow an RIS system can detect intruders, and then emit artificial noise in the intruder’s direction as a jamming technique. RIS elements can be precoded in a way that only legitimate users can decode, the authors state.

“RIS technology opens the door for a whole new realm of wireless applications in which the propagation medium is no longer an impediment, but rather an additional degree of freedom,” they write.

Don’t look for RIS soon. The authors don’t envision it being ready until the arrival of 6G communications, which by many estimates won’t be until later this decade. 5G still has yet to reach many quarters. Li-Fi itself, in its current non-RIS state, is still something that seems more for the future with its slow rate of adoption. But don’t lose sight of it.

New HQ connects 6000 lights via PoE

Chip giant Arm is using Ethernet for both data and electricity at its stylish four-story building. It installs Bluetooth-enabled smart building sensors too, but mounts them independent of the lighting system.

Lighting and Bluetooth sensors both connect to Ethernet at Arm’s new headquarters using Prolojik technology. The sensors reside on ceilings and walls, outside of the luminaires. (Photo credit: Image courtesy of Hundven-Clements Photography, via Scott Brownrigg architects.)

True to the point that Power over Ethernet (PoE) lighting makes the most sense in new builds rather than in retrofits, British semiconductor stalwart Arm has deployed the technology across some 6000 luminaires at its recently-opened four-story headquarters annex in Cambridge, England.

Arm is controlling the lights centrally over 19,000m2 using LightMatrix software from controls company Prolojik, which also provided a network of Bluetooth-enabled sensors to support smart building functions such as wayfinding. The sensors are not embedded in luminaires but reside on walls and ceilings. All the hardware connects to Ethernet.

PoE lighting uses Ethernet cable for the dual purposes of running both electricity and data to luminaires.  It can save money because so-called “Category 5” (Cat5) and “Category 6” (Cat6) and other Ethernet conduits do not require the expense of professional electricians, and are deemed safe enough to carry the lower voltages that are adequate to power LED lights, known for their low energy requirements.

The lower voltage itself is an energy saver — and thus also a cost saver — compared to the higher 110V and 220V that tend to run over traditional wires to LEDs and other destinations. In Arm’s case, the Ethernet is carrying 56V.

While the financial numbers generally don’t justify ripping out existing wires and replacing them with Ethernet in retrofits, the economics shine through in new builds.

That was the case at Arm, where at the end of 2019, High Wycombe, England-based Prolojik switched on LED lights installed by London-based mechanical and electrical contractor Bancroft Ltd. DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface) protocol travels over the Ethernet to turn lights on and off and dim or brighten them at the stylish quarters designed by London architectural and interior design firm Scott Brownrigg.

What are the main benefits to Arm?

“Reduction in energy usage, as PoE runs on 56V instead of 240V to the luminaire; and installation costs, as you only need to run a Cat5e/6 cable to luminaires,” Prolojik technical manager Dan King told LEDs Magazine.

The lights came from eight different vendors, each of which built Prolojik PoE drivers into its product.

Outside of the LED lights, Prolojik supplied its own Bluetooth-equipped sensors, built into a mesh network that can provide a number of smart building services including wayfinding, space usage, room booking, and targeted messaging.

Sensor functions include occupancy detection, temperature monitoring, and lux levels. They send their findings back to a central server via Prolojik’s Ethernet-connected Proxima sensor network. By noting room usage, facilities managers can reassign or redesign office and common areas; by noting lux levels, they can make necessary lighting adjustments; occupancy and temperature data can also trigger heating and cooling adjustments; and so forth. King said the network can be used for internal marketing, such as pushing out the café menu to employees’ phones. It can even track employee movements by communicating with employee lanyards.

The system could also be used to provide circadian lighting which adjusts lighting characteristics including spectral energy according to needs, but Arm is not currently deploying that feature, King said.

Neither Arm nor Prolojik revealed the cost of the lighting and smart building system. The two companies worked symbiotically, as Prolojik’s Proxima sensor network makes use of designs from Arm, a provider of semiconductor intellectual property.

Arm itself has been expanding into Internet of Things (IoT) technology including Internet-connected lighting, to gather data from buildings that can be analyzed and monetized. Indeed, in 2018  two webcasts were hosted with an Arm expert on smart lighting system architecture and building security into IoT designs.  Prolojik has served as a lighting partner on Arm IoT jobs, and is helping Arm develop a program called Space Analytics that analyzes the collected data.

Although Arm did not mount sensors inside luminaires at its new headquarters, Prolojik makes sensors that can be embedded inside luminaires.

At Arm headquarters, the 6000 lights include a variety of panels, downlights, luminaires, and exit signs. Vendors included Whitecroft, Fagerhult, Future Design, LTS, Wila, Selux, Lightworks, and RIDI. Three of those — Fagerhult, Whitecroft, and LTS — are part of the Habo, Sweden-based Fagerhult Group.

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