LED Street Lighting: Help is on the way!

communities and local government at the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority NYSERDA so on behalf of Governor Cuomo welcome this is the LED street lighting academy a four-part webinar series presented by a nyserda's clean energy communities program and the lighting Research Center of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute the purpose of the webinars is to focus on street lighting technology and lighting design to prepare municipal decision-makers for interacting with contractors and the public now converting street lights to energy-efficient LED technology is helping communities across New York to save taxpayer dollars provide better lighting reduce energy use and improve the environment now to date 100 city towns and villages across New York have converted approximately two hundred and eighty eight thousand streetlights to led through nyserda's clean energy communities program so if you are considering a conversion project chances are there is a community like yours in your region that is already saving money having converted to LED but it's a relatively new technology in the sense that these projects only became commercially viable in the last five years or so but it's the latest stage in a long history of innovation 130 years ago communities in New York started converting gas lamps to electric light gas lamps had to be lit individually every night by a lamp lighter it was dirty and dangerous work and electric light held the promise of being a cleaner less expensive technology it took some time but almost every gas lamp in the country was eventually converted to electricity in the 1950s streetlights were still controlled from a central switch so the town street lighting department would turn the lights on when the Sun went down and they turn them off in the morning and there was this elaborate system of circuits they would break down and it would cost a fortune to maintain and then the photocell was invented and this is that little hockey puck on the top of the light it knows if it's day or night and it turns the light on or off automatically and was at this time that many New York communities ran the numbers and they found that they could save a lot of money on maintenance charges and rental fees by purchasing the streetlight system from the utility and after a few years almost every streetlight in the country was converted to photocell controlled fixtures and the point is that today the technology is LEDs but it's what New Yorkers do you know we innovate we find better ways to do things but there are always fair questions so one kind of interesting point is I read an editorial in a newspaper from the 1880s where the commentator was saying that these new electric lights were unproven technology they posed a threat to public safety and that municipalities should really think carefully before adopting the technology well today LEDs hold the promise of being a cleaner less expensive technology but there are fair questions that need to be addressed and that's why we're putting on this webinar series it's it's really to help you come to your own conclusions about the technology and how it should be applied in your community for many years NYSERDA has provided technical information on lighting in general and helping customers choose the best technology and it's in that context that we developed this partnership with the lighting Research Center which is today the world's leading center for lighting research and education so we're extremely proud to introduce Dan Frering airing of LRC to kick off the LED street lighting academy but before I hand it over to Dan if you have any questions please use the Q&A box in the webinar we'll have a time to take a few questions at the end of this call and this webinar is being recorded so I think I'll just hand it over to you thank you Dan Thank You Brad hi everybody Dan Frering from the lighting Research Center I'm also here with John Bullough who's the director of transportation and safety lighting programs he'll talk in a minute or so oh that's interesting okay so first let's introduce ourselves the lighting Research Centre has been around for about 30 years were actually originally founded with a grant buy from NYSERDA we have research facilities here in Troy, New York and we do work in lots of different areas including energy and Technology Development human health the benefits of lighting transportation and safety product testing we also do work with plant health and design so if lighting touches it in some way we probably do some research on it we have a staff of about 30 people as well as 15 or so graduate students in masters and PhD programs in lighting just to give you an outline of what we're going to cover today first we're going to discuss what the purpose of street lighting are then we're going to look at how you determine if Street lighting is needed in an area at all or if you're looking to expand or retrofit lighting what are some of the things you need to think about with that we're going to also talk about good lighting what are some of the things that represent what what good lighting is we're going to look at an overview of opportunities for LED technology and then we're going to talk a little bit about some of the services that are offered through this project that we're doing with NYSERDA and we'll have some questions at the end this webinar is the first in a series of four as most of you probably know so this really is just our opportunity to give you an overview and we'll go in-depth into some of these topics more in later webinars so I know I'm going to turn this over to John and he's going to talk to you about the purposes of street lighting okay thank you Dan and hello everybody really to begin before we move into some of the specifics of LEDs we really want to just share a little bit about what the purpose is of street lighting why do we why do we install street lighting in the first place so it's probably not surprising that there are actually you know there are multiple reasons that we would want to use street lighting obviously lighting at night helps us see in conditions where it would otherwise be difficult or impossible for example we know cars at night on the road have headlights but those are limited in range and they can be glaring and of course pedestrians who are also using the road and near the road don't have headlights but they also of course need to see limiting or reducing the number of crashes is obviously a big motivator for installing street lighting and so is helping both drivers and pedestrians feel more comfortable when they're using the road the street and the sidewalks adjacent to that now street lighting can also be a factor in reinforcing feelings of personal security or safety so that sometimes is compromised when we're walking through a dark area at night and lighting can can help improve that sense of safety and security and finally not only feeling safer but but there is a widespread belief that that street lighting can actually help reduce criminal activity and we'll talk about that as well and then the first this first part of this morning's webinar we're going to walk through each of these in a little bit more detail so improved visibility obviously being able to see better it probably seems rather sort of intuitive and and obvious and and in many ways it is right we need lighting to see organizations like the illuminating Engineering Society who develop recommendations and standards for street lighting even state right up right up front pretty much that the primary purpose for street lighting is to provide quick accurate and comfortable visibility at night so as we've mentioned you know one one aspect of street lighting is to help drivers see beyond the range of their cars headlights in fact anytime that we're driving at night on an unlighted Road with our low beam headlights if we're driving faster than about 35 or 40 miles an hour we're taking a risk that that we may encounter hazards that whether those are people or other fixed objects that we may not have time to to stop for because we can't see far enough ahead and so what lighting does is give people some additional range it also helps pedestrians for example they need to see hazards that might be on the ground changes in elevation where curbs are and other other things as well as being able to see people in the vicinity who they might not be familiar with so another thing that lighting does for us is it actually gives us what we call figure-ground information about the roadway scene so the two pictures that are on this slide show a car with its headlights on in the dark on the top picture and in the bottom picture it's that same car with street lighting present so obviously in both cases those headlights are very visible so we know there's a car there but really it's only in the bottom picture that it would be easy to guess well how fast is that car moving because we can not only see the headlights but sort of the background against which the car is actually moving so having that information could give drivers as well as pedestrians more information about what's going on along the road and how they might act to avoid a crash or an accident and it's not just that sort of chain of logic it makes sense that if we can see better that hopefully that allows us to to avoid a crash but there are hard hard numbers that support a role for for street and road lighting in reducing crashes there have been many studies carried out over many decades some of the data from one study for different types of roads under different conditions are shown in this table here and you'll notice that pretty much all of those numbers in this table almost all of them are negative which indicates that lighting seems to be associated with reducing crashes and and not necessarily every study that has been done has shown that lighting seems to have a an association with reduced crashes but a clear majority of them seem seem to indicate that yes lighting street lighting does help reduce crashes at night and in particular the benefit seems to be larger when we have busier roads more complex situations things like intersections and other conflict areas where either vehicles and pedestrians might be sharing the same patch of real estate or vehicles with other vehicles so intersections interchanges roundabouts in those types of areas that are more complex lighting can help drivers and pedestrians avoid crashes in that situation one of course one of the most important conflicts that vehicles can face on the street is is pedestrians and pedestrians obviously are our flesh and blood while while cars are made out of a lot of metal right so that that really you know makes pedestrians particularly vulnerable for being injured or even killed in crashes with cars and it really does seem like nighttime is really a time when pedestrians are especially vulnerable to being injured and killed in car crashes over the past decade this bar chart shows four crashes in the dark which are the gray bars versus crashes in the daytime or dawn and dusk which are the two lighter colored bars that it does seem like in the past decade pedestrian deaths in daytime and in dusk and dawn it helps fairly steady but you do see an increase in nighttime pedestrian deaths and this may be related to things like we're using more cellphones when we're driving and we ought not to be but if that's true it may be that lighting may be at least one way to help pedestrians sort of stand out against the rest of the road and help cut through some of that distraction if that's what's causing this increase in crashes it's certainly not going to eliminate distracted drivers and certainly shouldn't excuse someone from looking at their phone at night especially at night but it is something that may make a difference between seeing and not seeing or noticing a pedestrian by a driver and of course every little bit that can make the size of these bars on this chart smaller is something that that would be helpful and well you know visual comfort is obviously not necessarily the same urgency level as the safety and reducing the crashes of particularly pedestrians as well as drivers along streets and sidewalks but we do know that especially over time uncomfortable seeing conditions can make drivers somewhat more erratic and variable in the way that they drive such as very you know being more variable in their lane position along the road and that could that sort of discomfort could lead to things like fatigue or stress and possibly more crashes and so one of the things that lighting can do especially if it's well designed without a lot of glare for example this very well lit Street with a lot of lanes in some sense provides a more nice uniform background to help reduce glare from headlights and things that might increase fatigue and stress especially stress if you're driving along a seven lane road like like this one now another purpose of street lighting is really to try to encourage pedestrian use obviously at night we know that if people don't feel safe in a particular location they they may be less likely to visit that location and research from the lighting Research Center the LRC has shown that people when they visit outdoor locations at night and this is a study showing some data from people both in New York City very large metropolis and Albany a relatively smaller city that in both cases people perceive those locations to be safer they agree that the lighting in this outdoor location makes people feel safer when the light level increases the horizontal illuminance on the on the pavement increases interestingly you know there weren't big differences weren't differences at all between people from that very large metropolis versus a relatively smaller City and there's been later research from even suburban areas and much less populated areas that show still the same trends what's interesting though is that that improvement isn't unlimited it's not just a matter of saying well more light is always going to help make people feel safer there does seem to be as you can see in this curve it begins to flatten out as you get higher and higher in the average light level once the light level gets up above ten or twenty or thirty lux further increasing the light level will have sort of diminishing returns in terms of how much it makes how much more it might make people feel safe so more light once you reach a certain threshold is not necessarily better for conveying a sense of security but this chart does seem to indicate that outdoor locations that that look a little brighter because they may have more light will actually appear to be safer up to a point but it's not only the light level that would make people or you know reinforce those feelings of safety and brightness the lighting Research Center has also looked at the role of the color or the spectrum of lighting and it's been found that that white light sources like light emitting diode or LED streetlights actually can make a street look brighter than a street lighted by a yellowish source which is typical of the high pressure sodium lamps that are still most commonly used on most of our streets for street lighting today and this is true even if we take our light meter and measure the light levels on the street and we find that they're the same number of Lux or foot candles on the road that color does seem to improve or increase brightness perception but it also seems to improve perceptions of safety so there does seem to be at least possibly some opportunities in some locations where perhaps we could use lower light levels with these wider light sources and still maintain perceptions of safety and security compared to what we've been doing under high pressure sodium now finally what one of the often we hear from municipalities one of the intended purposes of street lighting is sometimes to reduce not only the fear of crime which is sort of what the last couple slides have been talking about how safe do I feel when I'm walking in this down this street but obviously there's interest especially from municipalities to actually reduce the incidence of crime so we know we feel safer in those locations obviously we can see other people and where they might be hiding for example if they mean to do us harm but there really isn't a lot of really straightforward evidence that lighting itself has a large impact on reducing crime part of it is because there's just many many other factors that relate to that in some cases lighting has been shown in studies to have no measurable effect on crime and in some cases it's actually been shown that for things like stealing from vehicles where there's no other people around or some types of vandalism lighting might actually give the criminals sort of a boost by helping them see what they're doing in their criminal activity of course lighting should be if it's going to be used for this purpose a part of an overall security strategy that probably needs to include somehow eyes on the on the location whether that's police patrols or the presence of people who obviously could serve as witnesses and so on lighting alone is not going to be a very reliable crime fighter but it may be part of an overall security strategy so next we're going to talk a little bit about how municipality might decide you know when and where street lighting is needed so even if a municipality is you know planning to just replace your existing street lights with LEDs it may be worth considering you know whether all those lights really needed to be there in the first place or whether there might be other locations that might not be lighted at this time where there isn't lighting but maybe there it's worth thinking about whether there ought to be so some of the I guess some of the factors that a municipality should consider when thinking about lighting as something that would help in terms of safety and perceptions is the level of vehicle traffic and pedestrian use I mean these are the the main beneficiaries of street lighting but people who are using the street so when there's more traffic obviously there is the potential for more accidents and that may be a case where lighting could have a more substantive benefit.

The speed of vehicles also can affect when and where lighting can be helpful if you have a very low speed limit in one area of say 15 or 20 miles an hour in that situation car headlights if they're traveling may be sufficient for basic visibility and street lights might not be as necessary of course that doesn't take into account what pedestrians might need to see if that's an area where there are many pedestrians and of course if a location has a history of frequent nighttime crashes you know that also might indicate that lighting could be beneficial pedestrian use also is another issue that might increase the potential benefit of lighting especially in those areas where pedestrian use is frequent and lasts throughout much of the much of the entire night and of course that's going to happen in certain neighborhoods for example those with active nighttime businesses like restaurants bars theaters and so on location that has that type of commercial activity could be a candidate where lighting would be expected to be more beneficial than other locations some areas where you might only have you know largely offices for example used only in the daytime the light the need for lighting might be smaller but also remember that in New York State in the winter many people who work the the regular day shift still are driving to work or home from work or walking home or walking to work in in the dark that's especially in the winter time schools are often thought as mainly daytime uses but of course there are often sports events and other community activities going on in those buildings as well at night another factor that could influence your decision to to use lighting could be the perception of how safe that location is so if it's an area with a reputation as a relatively unsafe location and doesn't have any or very much lighting that may be an area where street lighting could offer a benefit for helping people again feel safer and more secure in that location finally as we mentioned lighting seems to have a larger impact beneficial impact for safety in more complex types of scenarios so the complexity of the street location is also another thing to consider when deciding whether that Street would would would benefit from lighting so when you have intersections that may especially ones that have unique geometries where you don't always know exactly where the road is going or coming from at non you know non right angle for example areas with slopes or sharp curves can also benefit because you don't always know where to look to expect to see pedestrians or other vehicles even unique situations like roundabouts or these traffic circles where drivers don't even necessarily know where to look for pedestrians who are trying to cross some of those types of roadway facilities and lighting may be something that can help make those pedestrians more stand out more while the drivers themselves are trying to navigate through what might be a confusing roundabout all these things like like medians and other sort of geometric factors whether there's lots of parking on on the street all those things may be part of your decision to say is lighting going to help me see pedestrians or other vehicles in this situation so I think we're going to turn things back over to Dan and he's going to talk a little bit about some of the characteristics of lighting that make it good Hi again everybody this is one question we get a lot people always want to say do I have good lighting or or bad lighting and as John has pointed out there's a lot of things that go into whether lighting and particular installation is quote good or bad so one of the first things that people always think about are light levels so John talked about Lux which is a measure of the amount of light on a particular surface typically the roadway or the sidewalk now Lux is an international unit and John mentioned after you get to about 30 lux there really is diminishing return in in feelings of safety and security now visibility may improve a little bit with a little more light but when we talk about 30 Lux what we really mean is is 3 foot candle so depends on on what measure you're you're used to where we tend to use foot candles more in the u.


so there are guidelines that tell us how much light you need in a particular area so it depends upon the particular situation if it's a quiet residential street you probably need a lot less light than if it's a busy intersection if the road is straight you don't necessarily need as much light as if it's curvy if you want drivers to be able to see ahead of them and notice the curve and which way it's turning and so on and streets as John mentioned with lower speed probably need less light so in one of the later seminars we will talk about design considerations and light levels that you should have in in particular areas depending on what your goals are what you're trying to achieve and how much you want people to be able to see another thing that people don't think about though with this idea of light levels is what we call uniformity and that really is looking at not necessarily how much light there is on average but how much the light levels vary between areas that are highly lighted in areas that there may be little or no light the less uniform the lighting is on a street or roadway the the less comfortable it's going to be because people will experience bright light levels and dark and bright and dark but also visibility is decreased because of that so we not only have to think about average light levels but we have to think about what is the contrast between areas that are highly lighted which may have 200 Lux or 20-foot candles in areas where there might be less than 10 lux or one foot candle and that is not uncommon when you see street lighting where there might be one streetlight on the utility pole and then another one maybe three or four poles away so these are things to consider when you're doing retrofits or considering installing new lighting not only what are the light levels but also how uniform is that light along a street or roadway one of the factors that a lot of people think about is aesthetics and appearance especially as you can see in the picture in a historic area people want to put in quote unquote more historic looking fixtures that blend with the community a little bit more and the one thing you need to understand about these fixtures is they're not there just at night they're visible during the day as well so we need to try to make sure they blend into different areas and a lot of times in downtown areas we try to do smaller scale fixtures like like the one show in this picture it gives a more kind of cozy residential historic feeling and then you know on on streets outside downtown areas we tend to use what we call cobrahead street lights which are really just functional kind of typically out of the field of view but you need to think about the characteristics of the luminaire and how it's going to fit in to a particular area cost obviously a very important generation not only the initial cost of purchasing and installing those fixtures in many cases replacing those fixtures but as well as the operating energy and maintenance cost and especially when we look at street lighting because street lights typically are put in and they're there for 10 or 15 years the the higher cost is typically that operating cost so whatever we can do to address that if we can lower the energy use and the maintenance costs typically that's going to be a benefit to the city in town and that really is when you look at LED street lighting what most people are concerned with lowering the energy use and reducing the maintenance costs of the street lights another factor that that very important is glare control and if you see in the picture on the on the top right you can see these post top lights that have very little glare control they're very bright spot very difficult time at night for your eyes to adjust to that and so it's difficult seeing beyond those or pass those lights because all you have is this bright source of light in your field of view so when we look at light fixtures that we might be looking to purchase or replace like existing lighting we have to think about fixtures that are shielded in some way where the light source is somehow recessed into the fixture or there are lenses or some other mechanisms that allow us to such a shield the field of view and this is particularly important where lights are mounted at a lower height if you have lights that are mounted at 10 or 12 feet off the ground they're obviously going to be more on the field of view than lights that are mounted at at 30 feet or more so we have to think about that when we're retrofitting lighting and think about how bright that source is going to fear up here and finally another thing that many cities and towns are concerned about are the idea of light pollution the light pollution has several factors the first one most people think about its sky glow this is the reason why if you are in the middle of a city and you look up you see very very few stars in the sky and but if you're in a rural area you tend to see you know an abundance of stars light that is being emitted into the air around us makes our view of the sky left less evident and so people want to see the stars they want to be able to look up at night so we have to think about how can we choose fixtures that are going to lower that impact and the other idea is like trespass and this is light that is going from an area to adjacent parts of the street or sidewalk so for example if you live in a city like we do in Troy many of our homes are built right up to the streets there's just a sidewalk and then there's the street and there's no place else to put the light fixtures except right on the street and so that light from that that street light which is doing a good job lighting the sidewalk and street might also be lighting my bedroom at night through the window and so we need to think about that and making sure that we can shield those light fixtures or put them in a location where they're not going into other people's property and affecting their view of the night sky or enjoy enjoyment of the night so next we'll talk a little bit about LED systems again we have another seminar next month on October 8th where we'll go more deeply into the technology itself but let's just talk a little bit about LEDs light emitting diodes it's a very cost effective light source as Brad said at the beginning of the seminar it's really only been in the last five years or so where we see LED streetlights becoming much more prominent light emitting diodes were actually developed many many years ago but they became a source for architectural and street lighting probably within the last five or ten years and as their efficacy has improved they've become much more viable for just about any type of source that we're using if you look at products if you go in look at the store shelves and Home Depot or anywhere where you're going to buy light bulbs you see that almost all light sources are LEDs now these LEDs have efficacies that are much higher than other existing light sources so we typically measure efficacy or efficiency on a lumen per watt basis kind of like miles per gallon for your car and so LEDs can be as high as 150 lumens per watt or more where when you look at for example old incandescent lamps those were about 10 to 12 lumens per watt but even when you compare that to high pressure sodium or metal halide light sources which are the two light sources predominantly used outside right now you look at those as being 100 to 120 lumens per watt LEDs are much more efficient they also are able to provide typically more uniform light because rather than being one large light bulb they are small sources of light that can be distributed throughout a light fixture and they can tend to provide a more uniform light on a street or roadway so they have a lot of benefits and they are becoming much more cost effective than they were you know five or 10 years ago so when we look at the economics when we look at both the initial initial purchase cost of LED light fixtures and include the energy use as well as the maintenance cost reduction we really see the economics of LEDs becoming very viable for most street lighting applications they have much higher efficacy so we recently did a retrofit installation and study in Albany County in New York state where we replace high pressure sodium lights with LED street lighting along about a three and a half mile roadway this was a Central Avenue in Albany Colonie for those of you familiar with Albany and we looked at a payback of about two to four years based upon energy and maintenance savings so those streetlights which as I said will be there for 10 or 15 years have been able to pay themselves back in a very short period of time simply by saving that energy of course that also is dependent upon you know whether the utility owns it whether the city owns it so those are all things you have to consider as well and what the costs are there but as a technology this is certainly something that we need to look at because of the savings that are are possible so let's wrap up talking about the services that are available from the lighting Research Center in partnership with NYSERDA through this project that we're doing first of all there are more webinars available in the series so as I said on October 8th we'll be talking about LED technology its performance how do you select the the wattage and the light output that you want for LEDs really diving deep into the technology to give you a better understanding of what it is how it operates how it compares to existing technologies that you already have installed in streets now on November 12 we'll talk about looking at planning installations or retrofits of LEDs so is it a new installation is it retrofit how should that be laid out what are some design considerations that you need to think about when using these what are anticipated costs of LEDs what do you see as prices right now for these fixtures installation cost and then what are savings that you can project so that will be talking more about design and we'll get in more in depth about light levels and and how much light there should be and what do we mean by uniformity and how do you measure that and and what are some tools that you can use to be able to make sure that you're getting an installation that's going to give you what you want the nice thing about retrofits is not only can we save energy but it also gives us the opportunity where we might be able to improve the lighting conditions and make them more comfortable and safer in our cities and towns so we'll talk about how you can think about those things and then finally in December we'll look about the understanding of impacts on the public on people so things about color characteristics you know there is a lot of discussion about the correlated color temperature or CCT which is a measure of the color appearance of light sources and with LEDs as John said it's a whiter light it tends to be a higher correlated color temperature which means it appears more white than the high-pressure sodium lights that we're used to and people are concerned about the impact of that on for example people's health we'll also talk about sky glow and light pollution and how LED fixtures might impact those things and how we can make sure that that we're addressing that we'll also talk about things like more about brightness and safety perception and how LEDs can improve that and finally we'll also talk about what we call adaptive control strategies these are some people call this smart street lighting systems so these allow you to vary the light levels over time for example if there is more traffic on a street at particular hours perhaps there can be more light there than there might be later at night where there is much lower traffic but also the ability to be able to control this and integrate it with other features like finding empty parking places and safety issues like security cameras and those kind of things so LEDs allow themselves to be adapted where a high pressure sodium light source typically you couldn't dim it it was what it was it was a gave you a particular lumen output it just sat there and did that you could turn it on you could turn it off but there wasn't much else that you could do where LEDs allow you to do a lot of different things to adapt them both as energy-saving strategies as well as trying to make places appear safer more secure and and so on and finally one one last service that we are able to provide is technical assistance you know we we deal with lighting every day here at the lighting Research Center and so we don't necessarily understand how complex and difficult it can be for for people who are out there and you have a lot more things to do about managing your cities and towns and your the last thing you want to worry about is what a street light wattage should be or how many Lux there are on your street and those kind of things so NYSERDA has made available through this project technical assistance from the lighting Research Centre we have people here who understand design who are experts in technology safety security those kind of things so as you look to convert street lighting to LEDs some of the things that we can help with are product selection so if you're dealing with utility or it's a municipal own situation you have different products that you might be able to choose from how are you going to go about choosing the best product for your particular application based upon what you have existing or what your goals are how you might want to improve lighting in a new situation so we could help with that we can do some technical analysis looking at light levels distribution so again you might not even know what the light level you have on existing streets and roadways are we can come out we can take some measurements we can give you an idea of what those are we can do some analysis looking at different types of fixtures looking at how we might improve those light levels and the uniformity and give you a better recommendation than just saying ok if it's this wattage high pressure sodium light here is the wattage of LEDs I should replace it with maybe you have some flexibility where you might be able to save more energy looking at a fixture that might give you a better distribution more uniformity and allow you to to lower those light levels lower the wattage of that so we'll be able to do some technical analysis some photometric analysis of that as well and finally do some evaluation of existing and replacement lights so what we've done or planning to do with with with at least one city or town is to to look at some instances where they've already installed LED street Lighting's there were some complaints from people in the location they thought they were too bright you know we'll go there we'll do an evaluation try to see well did we just put in ones that were didn't have good glare control or is it that the the light levels were just too high so we'll do some analysis there we can also do if you want to retrofit one particular area or one street we can help you with that help you with the layout help you with – with choosing fixtures and again we can do some evaluation of that how much light is there what are the light levels what do people think of that particular area how successful is that and then that will help you to plan for the the rest of the changes be that if you're going to own those streetlights yourself or if you're going to work with a utility or with NYPA there will will assist you in trying to make the choices that are going to be best for for you and for the people in your community and I think Brad or Rob can can explain how you go about doing that more than that I'll be able to but you can contact the clean energy communities coordinators to get that process started if you are a community that would like to access the lighting Research Center for technical assistance so that leaves about 10 minutes or so for questions so I'll turn it back over to Rob who will I think if we have any questions that have been typed in we'll kind of handle that thanks Dan, yeah this is Brad let me just go through some of the questions that we've received and so and feel free to use the Q&A box if you have additional questions we won't be able to cover everything but one question that was asked is are the is the slide presentation going to be made available after the webinar we are recording the webinar so we will make the webinar itself available for future viewing we also make the presentation slides available in the LED streetlight toolkit on the web page for nyserda's clean energy communities program you can access that by visiting nyserda.


gov/cec clean energy communities also to access the coordinator support that's available to municipalities throughout New York State you can Google NYSERDA Clean Energy community coordinators or again visit that website and they are working on nyserda's behalf to help communities navigate the clean energy communities program and to implement the various high-impact actions one of which is LED streetlights so here's a question for you Dan based on your experience working with communities on LED streetlight installations what what are some of the complaints or lessons learned that you have experienced well this is John one of the things that sometimes happens is if you know one of the things that that often happens is you sort of have at least an initial recommendation which you know may come from a utility or something that would say well uh 100 watt sodium fixtures should be replaced with you know an X watt LED and so on and so forth and sometimes that's perfectly fine depending on sort of what your scenario is so I think one of the issues is sometimes people don't really have a clear expectation about what the street lights will look like once it's installed and maybe maybe surprised in some sense that either the light was brighter than they were expecting or not not as bright as they were expecting so I think that's something that that's fairly common again we talked about how the the color of the light is one of those things that kind of factors into this as well as the light level and even things like the uniformity all that can can change those perceptions so I think sometimes just the different appearance that is either what brighter or not as bright that you know those those rules of thumb are useful for certain many situations but not necessarily every specific situation okay thanks John now we get this question a lot you know when we talk about converting to LEDs are we talking about like switching out just the bulb or is that the whole fixture or can you just tell us a little bit about what technically is involved with conversion well you can do either you can either just replace the bulb of the lamp and you know do there's also a control mechanism called a ballast in existing fixtures where you may have to to bypass that or do some rewiring there but in most cases it makes more sense to change out the entire fixture when you want to get the real benefits of LEDs it really has both to do with the light output they have but also the distribution they have and to get that advantage where you get a much better distribution so you think about existing high pressure sodium lights they dump most of their light right underneath the fixture and the difference between the light right under the fixture and just a few yards off might be twenty to one or or more and where LEDs allow you to distribute that light more evenly so you get a much more uniform light level also the fixture can be designed to do things like protect from glare and also when you think about existing light fixtures some of those may have been in there for many many years ten years or more and probably the lens on those fixtures might be yellowed the lenses is designed to distribute the light from the existing high pressure sodium source which is a very small source and when you take LEDs and you try to put a group of them in there the lens does not do the job that it should to distribute that light so in most cases it makes sense to replace the entire fixture with one designed specifically to take advantage of all of the characteristics of the LEDs there may be some situations especially in post op fixtures where maybe you just want to do a lamp replacement because maybe that post op installation was done recently and there are some retrofits that can be placed in that in that post-op fixture you're using the existing globe that's there but again that's something that we can help with in looking at on what makes the most sense depending on all the various characteristics that you're doing but typically it is a fixture replacement okay great so we've been asked assuming that there will be incentives for LED streetlights will those be through NYSERDA or the utilities I think I can try to field an answer to that question you know NYSERDA doesn't offer direct incentives for street light replacements although many communities are using their clean energy communities grants to help fund LED streetlight projects so that's one area to look at in the grants there will be future rounds of nyserda's clean energy communities program so keep an eye out for new grant opportunities that might emerge but there are some incentives available through certain utilities the clean energy community coordinators can help to navigate those opportunities and and to point them out the best thing to do is probably look directly on the utilities website but I think that based on the experience of these clean energy community coordinators they're a great resource to ask these kinds of questions because they are located in your regions throughout the state and they're familiar with the different incentives that are available through the local utility now another question is is there any sort of before-and-after guide based on installation communities to actually see the difference and I I think this also gets at you know you know are there are there places that you can go to see before and after or the old technology versus the new technology and and and should should cities you know consider doing some kind of demonstration you know to have their citizens able to compare the difference in in the real world okay well this is John I mean there there may not be a lot of I guess resources where it's very obvious that you could go and read this for example Dan mentioned the project that we did in collaboration with NYSERDA and the New York State do T orientation on Central Avenue so people who are in the the capital district could certainly look at that area I would suggest that one possibility of doing that might be actually through the clean energy communities coordinators perhaps if there are communities in their regions who have already looked at changing some of their street lights to LED that might be nearby that might be an opportunity to see some of that there are a few case studies so you can you know you can google case studies of LED street lighting if you do do that you probably want to look for things that are more recent as opposed to from 2009-2010 so there may be some publications that have some photos and things like that but probably the best way to to really know what what what what's happening is to see it and that may be one possible way to do allow that to happen yeah I know a lot of communities who are considering this especially if they have a number of street lights might want to work with the utility or whoever there they're working with to install the lights to see if they will do a demonstration take one particular area or two where you know maybe you have a lower light level area or an area where it's a downtown area where there's higher pedestrian traffic do some retrofits of some existing streetlights see how people like it you know we can do that with you in a in a fashion where we can actually do questionnaires and ask people what they think but it's always good people like to see and get the feel of what the retrofit looks like and you can then maybe take that feedback if people think for example that it looks too bright maybe you can consider the and going to lower light levels in other areas rather than what you did so a small demonstration or a pilot is always a good idea before you just go and decide to to change out every single streetlight in your town great so we've received several other questions some relating to light pollution others to street light maintenance due to timing we're going to address those issues and in future webinars but given the fact that we're at the top of the hour we're going to wrap up now so I just wanted to say again that this is a presentation of the LED street lighting Academy between nyserda's a partnership between nyserda's clean energy communities program and the lighting Research Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute really want to thank Dan and John for providing all this great information we hope that you found it helpful and we will see you on future webinars so do keep an eye out and register for each of those webinars individually thank you very much and have a great rest of your day thank you.

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