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For more than 50 years, sports lighting was simplistic. You had one choice and it offered very little functionality. Facility operators became accustomed to the limitations of metal halide lights and worked around the inconveniences. Everyone was “happy,” or so they thought. And then in 2012, LED sports lighting was introduced, and the expectations changed forever.
Facilities immediately benefitted from the switch to LED with improved visibility, the practical elimination of maintenance and on average, a 75 percent reduction in energy costs. But, for some arenas, the cost to get all the functionality was beyond their budget, while many others suffered from “F.O.M.O.” – fear of missing out – when new features and functionality were developed, obsoleting what they just purchased.
That all changed at the end of 2018 with the advent of the new Ephesus Lumadapt system, the industry’s first adaptive fully customizable LED sports lighting and controls system. Lumadapt allows facility operators to buy what they need today and then remotely update, adapt and expand the system as their needs change and new technologies and features become available. Think of it as a laptop or cell phone, downloading product updates and new apps as they are developed.
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Among those that benefit most from adaptable lighting systems are multi-use arenas that host a variety of events. No longer do these venues need to bring in temporary lights or have different sets of light fixtures for every event. Now, with the push of a button they can go from basketball lighting to hockey lighting to monster truck show lighting.
Two of the first adopters of the Lumadapt system were Amalie Arena, home of the Tampa Bay Lightning and NYCB Live – formerly known as the Nassau Coliseum on Long Island. The Lightning, one of the most tech-savvy franchises in professional sports, saw the benefits of a system that will adapt to their future needs for the many different events the arena hosts. NYCB Live installed the “future proofed” system in December timed with the Islanders’ return to the venue. Even though the NHL team will play just 20 games at the arena, the facility operators understood how a fully integrated system’s adaptability will be advantageous for concerts, tennis tournaments, trade shows, collector conventions and the hundreds of events it stages annually.
“Ever since we introduced the first LED sports lighting solution in 2012, it has become obvious that facility operators will no longer accept lights that simply turn on and off,” said Mike Quijano, Director of Business Development and Product Marketing of Eaton’s Ephesus Sports Lighting. “The vast majority of operators we meet with have heard about the benefits of LED from their colleagues and have done their research. They understand the value of an adaptable and integrated solid-state lighting system that offers them solutions to their unique problems and the opportunity to make their venue stand out from the competition in attracting marquee events.”
Now that “future-proofed” adaptable LED sports lighting has arrived, here are four concerns that facility operators no longer face when evaluating the benefits of switching to an LED sports lighting solution.
1. BUDGET CONSTRAINTS will not allow me to purchase the complete functionality I will eventually need. Adaptable LED sports lighting offers customers a suite of a-la-carte features and functionality allowing them to add features as their needs change. A few of these features include: RGBA color, beam tuning, color temperature tuning, remote health/status monitoring and a dynamic scene builder with the capability to make personalized lighting scenes.
2. EVOLVING TECHNOLOGY will make the system I buy today antiquated by the time it is installed. Many current LED sports lighting systems are simply a string of independent fixtures that are only connected via the in-house control system to turn the lights on and off. An adaptable LED sports lighting system is designed with an intelligent cloud data approach that connects the entire system, allowing users to remotely monitor system heath and upload new features, functionality and upgrades.
3. WHAT I NEED TODAY might not be what I need a decade from now or beyond. The long lifespan of an LED sports lighting solution can be both a curse and a blessing. But with the ability to add features, functionality and technological innovations, facility operators can be assured that the system they buy today will remain state-of the-art and solve problems they don’t yet anticipate.
4. WARRANTIES are expensive and never seem to cover the service or parts I need. The ability to monitor system health and usage has allowed warranties to evolve from a quarter-decade long coverage plan that treats everyone the same, to a more personalized service plan. Rather than commit for 25 years, facility operators can choose a 10 year traditional warranty and then enter into an annual service agreement if desired based upon their specific use and health of their system.
To learn more about the latest in LED sports lighting technology, visit https://ephesuslighting.com/
This article is part of a monthly series on sports lighting. View the entire series here.