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Energy Management Projects 

Energy management projects are normally run by mechanical engineers. They are fairly good at managing co-generation and other mechanical-based projects. When it comes to electrical energy utilization, their lack of solid knowledge of this discipline manifests in improper, energy inefficient, designs and retrofits. The biggest inefficiency happens on lighting-related energy management projects, and this is not only if these are run by the energy management department, but also the electrical engineering department. 

The electrical designer is usually a person, who has little knowledge of lighting theory and he normally designs the systems for raw footcandles. Veiling reflections and direct glare are responsible that although the footcandle level is within the reference standard, the visual efficiency may be up to 10x lower than in a properly designed system - that means that up to 90% energy is wasted. Another problem is that despite the fact that past and current research from major institutions has already for half a century indicated importance of color on visual and work performance, the electrical designer is unaware of it. In our opinion the main reason is that major light bulb manufacturers have been making excellent profits in selling illuminants with the wrong color temperature and spectrum. These are the companies whose employees are sitting in various committees and unfortunately are responsible for setting national standards.


        The lighting equipment suppliers often become "the experts" who often run the lighting calculations the electrical consulting engineers, or they supply the software, should the consultants want to do the calculations themselves. Few of the better consultants are fully aware of the faults in the system. Great majority of them don't realize the real-world-inefficiency of e.g. both low and high pressure sodium lamps, which are used primarily for outdoor lighting. The actual efficiency of these lamps is quite low, despite the fact that "the official" efficiency in Lumens/Watt is very high high. Changing color temperature of the illuminant can again, in some applications, especially the outdoor ones, increase efficiency of the system by a factor of up to 10.

We have all been in parking lots with yellow low pressure lights. The light is monochrome. It is lacking color spectrum and the blue component. Lack of the blue component is responsible that our pupils open more and the average eye becomes, at these low lighting levels, unfocused as a result. In addition to that the color contrast is totally gone. Although the light meter may read sufficient footcandle value, the ability to see and perform visual tasks in such light is very poor.

Where we can help most is in evaluating energy management projects, the work of electrical departments, and to suggest solutions, or help in creating the solutions. 


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