Light Management Systems - Upgrading the efficiency of Lighting Systems

By using LED Lighting Systems the consumer can higher the lighting quality of the installation and by the same time reduce costs and save energy. LED lighting systems are extremely efficient light sources compared to discharge or incandescent lamps. LED produces more visible light for each watt of power they consume. The efficiency even increases when lighting controls are used. It is not the same regarding discharge lamps where the efficiency even drops with dimming. Light Management Systems require more components for the installation that is billed in higher costs for the lighting system. But look at the incredible savings when reducing the energy bill by running the system dimmed on levels like 30% or 50% for maybe half of the required time. Let's get into the topic by watching some points.

LMS - Drivers and Controls

There are numerous possibilities for Light Management Systems and compounds that are doubled and tripled by the choice of the brand. Have a look at the basic features.

First the LED needs a driver. The driver is the most critical element defining mainly the performance of the LED product. The LED driver should have a rated lifetime comparable to the LED Module. The driver is the power supply, converting the voltage from AC to DC and stepping the main electricity supply voltage down to the forward voltage of the LED Modules. There are two versions of drivers, constant current drivers and constant voltage ones. If the LED Modules are directly connected to the driver, the constant current driver is the choice. If the Modules have additional controls, the constant voltage one is mostly right. The choice is depending on the system of the LED Modules and Printed Circuit Boards, comprehensive datasheets of the manufacturer or supplier describe clearly which components need to be connected. Powering LED by a driver, the system can be switched on and off.

Additionally from switching the LED lighting system, control systems dim the installation. Dimming is realized by a control unit. The control unit needs to be connected to an electric supply and has limited numbers of connections for LED products. Have a careful look at the datasheets when designing the installation. Dim LED lighting systems, reduce the electric load of the installation and save energy. Even more energy can be saved when considering the higher performance of a dimmed LED and higher lifetime which is also influencing the maintenance costs.

Let's summarize: LED solutions are saving energy by replacing conventional light sources. Add savings of energy for dimming the LED lighting system and add additional savings again for the effected higher lifetime that lowers the maintenance costs.



Where to install intelligent lighting systems? There are numerous applications where the installation of a LMS makes sense. Have a look at warehouses. The area where the goods are stored is normally huge. Standards require a certain illuminance level for the work of the employers. But imagine to illuminate the whole big area with the same level for working although the staff is moving in certain small areas only. The solution is a lighting management system that will use sensors and controls to reduce the lighting level in areas that are not in use by machines or the staff. Those areas where the staff is working or goods are transported are illuminated with the required illumination level according to the standard. This is saving a tremendous amount of energy every month. Look at open-plan offices, the general illumination system can offer lighting that are suitable for walking, printing and easy office tasks. The desk lighting provides higher task lighting for computer work, reading and writing. As soon as the employer is going on toilet, into a meeting or conference, the lighting system is not detecting any movement and will dim down till the colleague is back. Some cities use intelligent lighting systems to dim streetlights at night when the traffic is really low, mostly between midnight and five o'clock in the morning. It is not necessary to run the system 100% all night long. The lighting controls are pre-programmed to adjust the lighting level according to time and traffic. Switches help to reduce energy in areas that are not frequently used like toilets, floors, schools (when leaving the classroom the lighting system is often forgotten to be switched off), garages or dressing rooms. Most of the products that are available at MyLEDLightingGuide are suitable for LMS.

LED - characteristics using LMS

LED lighting systems are made to work in combination with intelligent ballasts and controls. LEDs are dimmable in the full range of 100% to 0% without steps, making smooth changes in lighting levels possible. The more dimmed, the better the efficiency as the system is not driven at the upper limit and the longer the lifetime. No start or warm up time necessary, LEDs offer immediate lighting levels with full control flexibility.

Light Source dimmable dimming range color change lifetime
Incandescent lamps yes

100% - 0%

without steps

the more dimmed,

the warmer light color

not effected
CFL yes 100% - 1%

high color changes

at 30% - 1%

not effected
Fluorescent lamps yes 100% - 1%

high color changes

at 30% - 1%

not effected


(Ceramic / Quartz)

no for Quartz

yes for Ceramic

dimming by special ballast,

with limitations!

color changes possible

shorter lifetime

reduced efficiency

LED yes

100% - 0%

without steps

color changes possible

longer lifetime

higher efficiency

LED Advantages - Compared to other light sources

  • Mercury free
  • Long Lifetime (30.000h - 100.000h)
  • Immediate 100% luminous flux
  • Dimmable 0% - 100%
  • Low maintenance
  • Lifetime-Warranty with MyLEDLightingGuide
  • 30% less CO2 and energy consumption than halogen lamps
  • 90% less CO2 and energy consumption than incandescent lamps
  • Eligible for rebates


Regarding all the points, LED products are asking for the connection to Light Management Systems. The features of LEDs itself are dominant over traditional light sources. Add savings for reduced energy by using controls and add savings again for the better efficiency and longer lifetime of the system connected to reduced maintenance costs. Light Management Systems should be considered in a lot of applications. Warehouses, open-plan offices, schools, floors and toilets are just some examples where it is retaking the investment in a really short time: Look carefully at the task and future investments.

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