Network lighting controls (NLC) can increase energy savings of commercial lighting projects by an average of 49% beyond LED savings alone, while making workplaces more comfortable, efficient, and responsive to the needs of facility owners and occupants. Despite all these benefits, market penetration of NLCs in U.S. commercial and industrial buildings still hovers at less than 1%.
While there are several reasons for lagging adoption of NLCs, the DesignLights Consortium (DLC) consistently hears from stakeholders that a major one is unfamiliarity with the design, installation, and configuration of this technology. Fortunately, there are some readily available and free resources designed to break down these barriers – helping to increase the comfort level around NLCs for installers, specifiers, distributors, building managers, and energy efficiency program administrators alike.
The DLC last year announced an agreement with the Lighting Controls Association (LCA)to collaborate in the offering of online courses that advance students’ knowledge of NLCs. The DLC has identified several courses offered through the LCA’s Education Express that are relevant to our NLC Technical Requirements, which serve NLC incentive programs for utilities and efficiency programs across the country. These free, online courses are available in 31 learning modules on topics ranging from lighting control technology and application to design, energy codes, and commissioning. Check the DLC website for additional details.
How to surmount some of the challenges regarding low NLC installation rates will also be a topic of discussion among attendees at the DLC’s two-day Controls Summit in Detroit in September (“Unlocking the Potential of Networked Lighting Controls”. For more information, visit the DLC’s Summit page.
Levin Nock is senior technical manager for the DesignLights Consortium.