The evolution of LED lighting technologies – October 2022 Newsletter

The Principal´s Pen

I recently devoted some time to reflect on my journey in lighting.

Many of us will remember that time in 1999 when there was widespread concern that when the date change on 31 December 1999 would cause major disruptions throughout the world because the computer date settings would not cope with the year 2000.  Airplanes would be grounded for fear that their onboard computers would fail, our computers would crash and much more according to the prophets of doom at the time. Of course, thankfully, nothing remotely like that happened.

We first saw LED indicator lamps make their appearance in the 1980s.  It was only much later in around 2007 that the first white LEDs began to be available.  In South Africa, initially, they were very blue in colour.  However, it was not long before 100 lumens per watt LEDs were available and the correlated colour temperature improved.  The rest is history.  LEDs are now used for every possible lighting application. I have not used any of the old technology products since 2008. LED sport field lighting provides superior aimed flood lighting that is also required for 4K and 8K colour television filming of events.

As lighting integrated with other technologies within the ambit of 4IR, many new lighting solutions became possible.  Luminaires could be powered using Power over Ethernet (PoE) providing greater versatility, and plug ‘n play installation at a fraction of the cost of normal electrical reticulation for lighting.  PoE makes use of traditional data cables that carry both Direct Current (DC) power to the luminaire and data to the computer network.  Other solutions include using luminaires that make use of Bluetooth mesh, daylight harvesting, occupancy sensing, consumption monitoring all of which are smart application based solutions on a smart device.

More exciting lighting solutions include Visible Light Communication (VLC) where the luminaire provides a connectivity point for the WiFi network or alternatively via LiFi (Light Fidelity) where LED light is used to transfer large volumes of data up and down safely and efficiently at speeds far faster than the fastest WiFi presently available in South Africa.  Another exciting lighting solution makes use of Indoor Positioning Systems (IPS) which is suitable for indoor lighting applications where the GPS is ineffective.  A suitable application for the particular shop of facility is downloaded onto a user/customers smartphone.  On entering the shop/facility, the person is able to navigate a shop. hospital, museum, shopping mall or airport as examples and at the same time enjoy an interactive experience.  Wherever the IPS system has been deployed in overseas stores such as Lidl, Carrefour and others.

A number of other control systems such as Casambi and others are finding greater acceptance.

None of us should thing for a moment that lighting has reached its pinnacle.  On the contrary, LED technology continues to advance, new systems and controls emerge which make it easier to include in lighting designs and easier to activate prior to handing the site over to the operator/owner.

Our Advanced Diploma in Illumination Engineering students study the new technologies fully in their second year.  They are required to be able to design the system architecture as well as the lighting design in their assignments.

Our next webinar will be presented on 20 October 2022.  The Topic is “Episode 10: Lighting Design Methodology from A to Z”.  The details about this webinar appear separately in this Newsletter together with a link to register to attend.  It address the process rather than any lighting design software use.  It is the process to be followed when working on lighting projects as a member of the greater design team.

I wish you all great business and good health.  I wish you calm as you race to complete projects before the rapidly approaching end of year..

With best wishes

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

  • Moses Hauwanga, Windhoek, Namibia – 9 October
  • Melissa Lentz, Sydney, Australia (Graduate) – 10 October
  • Tammy Maharaj, Stanger – 14 October
  • Jeannine Vorster, Cape Town – 15 October
  • Erin Jones, Cape Town – 16 October
  • Ryan Jones-Hockley, Johannesburg (Graduate) – 17 October

Welcome to our new BHA School of Lighting Students

  • Jaroslaw Otremba, Józefów, Poland – BHASL003C19 Advanced Diploma in Illumination Engineering Course
  • Pablo Albarello. Cape Town – BHASL003C19 Advanced Diploma in Illumination Engineering Course

The following students are preparing to write their first year examinations before starting second year studies.  We wish you great success!

  • Ruben Trigaardt, Netherlands
  • Oliver Hauser, Johannesburg, SA

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Upcoming Events from BHA School of Lighting


Cost: Free of Charge

Date: 20 October 2022

Time: 5:45pm for 6pm – 7pm (SAST)

Presenter: Phil Hammond, BHA School of Lighting

About: In this webinar we will take you through the Lighting Design process from start to finish.  Obviously, the process may differ in some parts from project to project.  The headings below are merely to give structure in the event agenda.  As is often said: “The devil is in the detail”.

  • Introduction
  • Important considerations
  • Initial approach
  • Meetings
  • Technical including Standards & Compliance
  • The lighting design process and steps
  • M & V
  • Commissioning
  • Sign-off
  • Handover
  • Conclusion
  • Surveys
  • Q & A

BHA SCHOOL OF LIGHTING – 13 October 2022
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