The U.S. Department of Energy published a Gateway field demonstration of the long-term performance LED lights used in particular applications. The study evaluated four LED lighting installations.
In addition to wanting LED lighting for improved energy efficiency, some of the installations were motivated by other potential benefits including improved lighting quality, maintenance savings, and integration with control systems.
The four projects revealed that full evaluation of a project’s success must go beyond just performance data and also look at the individual project goals and priorities. The Gateway study examined LED lighting installations at Hilton Columbus Downtown Hotel, St. Anthony Hospital, the Princeton University Icahn Lab, and the University of Maryland CSPAC.
Conclusions From Four Installations
Hilton Columbus Downtown Hotel
The LED downlight installation at the Hilton Columbus Downtown Hotel was primarily motivated by architectural and lighting design goals. The hotel compared improvements in light distribution and light quality to the incumbent technologies. In addition to the aesthetic considerations, the LED lighting offered greater control for the hotel guests and provided substantial energy and operational savings for Hilton. The LED luminaires maintained their performance over the time of the study.
St. Anthony Hospital
At St. Anthony Hospital, the replacement of existing CFLs with integral LED lamps was found to be the lowest cost option for converting the five-year-old CFLs to LED and reduce the maintenance burden. The attractive economic and maintenance savings continue to make sense. The economics of the system may need reevaluation as the CFL ballasts reach their rated lifetimes.
Princeton University Icahn Lab
Princeton University Icahn Lab initiated a conversion to LED retrofit kits because of the University’s energy and sustainability goals. The results of the LED lighting installation at the lab demonstrated the potential economic, energy, and sustainability benefits of LED conversions. The LED retrofit kits installed in CFL downlights and 2×2 fluorescent troffers maintained their performance over the time of the study. The use of controls shows the additional savings that control strategies can bring, but also illustrates some of the difficulties of commissioning controls systems.
University of Maryland CSPAC
At the University of Maryland CSPAC, the incumbent halogen wall wash luminaires consumed a considerable amount of energy and were expensive to operate due to their high wattage lamps and their long operating hours. However, addressing these issues with the LED light conversion was made more difficult due to the luminaire’s unusual shape and the architectural constraints.
Despite some performance concerns in color shift and maintained illuminance, the LED retrofit kits proved to be a cost-saving solution. The cost savings resulted from a combination of the low initial cost, ease of installation, as well as the energy and maintenance savings.