Cr Arron Woods

Technology upgrades attract hundreds to Smart Lighting Summit in Melbourne

Key stakeholders from Australia’s lighting industry gathered in Melbourne last week to discuss the impact of new technology on the sector at the same time as a draft on new Australian and New Zealand street lighting standards was released for public comment. With energy efficient solutions like LED and smart control systems becoming more prevalent, councils and developers are focusing heavily on these technologies as a way to cut costs and reduce environmental effects.

Attracting over 250 council officers, consultants, designers, engineers and developers the Australian Smart Lighting Summit saw two days of presentations from some of the country’s most influential lighting authority’s and a boutique exhibition of energy efficient products from leading manufacturers including Bemi Lighting, Sylvania Lighting Australasia, Zumtobel, Copper Lighting, OSRAM, Philips and GE.

Cr Arron Woods

Cr Arron Woods, Councillor, City of Melbourne

Presentations from Professor Rob Adams and Ian Dryden of City of Melbourne’s design team set the scene for the conference, which blended topics on outdoor and indoor lighting strategies and design. Ian Dryden, the City’s Industrial Design Leader, said there’s limited opportunity to present solutions to designers, local government and private developers. “The Summit allowed the lighting industry to share innovation and ideas in a relaxed environment with their client base”, said Dryden.

City of Melbourne will shortly announce the Public Lighting Strategy 2013 which addresses lighting design, safety and amenity, attracting the evening crowd to public spaces and efficient maintenance programs. The strategy also aims to minimise the negative impacts of outdoor lighting through the use of energy efficient technology as City of Melbourne works towards the goal of becoming carbon neutral by 2020.

Other key speakers included Tim Carr, Lighting Leader from Arup, Belinda Hill, Asset Technical Officer at Adelaide City Council and Paul Brown, Managing Director at Ironbark Sustainability. A case-study on a recently completed LED pilot project at University of Melbourne was presented by Steve Brown, Design Director at NDYLIGHT which saw the complete LED lighting upgrade of the Redmond Barry building and University Square car park. Aimed at identifying and resolving issues in upgrading all lights to LEDs in existing buildings the University will use the results of this project to drive future upgrades of its portfolio of assets.

“I found it very interesting the divergent views of the conference regarding realising the energy savings today or to defer bulk changeovers to maximise asset utilisation”, commented Noel Twyman, Public Lighting Manager at Citipower & Powercor. “It’s an important time for us all to work together to ensure that the community benefits”, said Twyman.

The Summit comes at a time of heightened tension as the draft street lighting standards paper receives mixed reviews from the industry. The review falls on part six of the standard which focuses on the technical requirement for luminaires and aims to incorporate SSL as an approved light source. The objective of the new standard specifies the design, construction, performance and testing requirements of street lighting luminaires which need to withstand elements including vibrations from traffic, dust storms and ultraviolet radiation. Industry commentators have labelled the updates ‘extremely prohibitive and precise’.

Roundtable discussions at the conference on hot industry topics including OMR charge, future price points and lighting standards allowed attendees to speak out and share solutions to the issues raised. “This was a wonderful opportunity to network and chat with likeminded professionals”, said Danielle Mastro, Director at Lights Lights Lights who also joined the City Lights Tour lead by Ian Dryden and attended panel discussions involving industry experts on street, event and interior lighting that sparked conversation amongst delegates.

“At such a significant point in the growth of the lighting sector a platform for people to share their views and best practice has been welcomed by the industry”, stated the Summit organiser Charlene Corrin from Expotrade Global. “This is the first time this Summit has been held in Australia, and considering the response from this years’ participants it will become a very influential annual event.”

Expotrade Global organises events in the infrastructure, sustainability, energy and lighting sectors including the Middle East Smart Lighting & Energy Summit being held on 11 – 12 November 2013 under the patronage of Municipality of Abu Dhabi City.