ILC Adds New Categories for More Ways to Recognize Exemplary Lighting Projects

In January, the Interior Lighting Campaign announced the addition of three new categories to its annual Exemplary Performance Recognition. The Campaign provides resources, independent technical assistance, and recognizes commercial and federal facility owners /managers who complete high-efficiency new construction or retrofit lighting projects in several categories. The new categories all involve the use of controls for lighting that are integrated to also control other energy uses in the building, either HVAC (heating, cooling, and ventilation equipment), plug loads (such as desk lamps or printers that are plugged into a wall outlet), or other integrated systems.

This new group of innovative categories brings the total number of recognition categories to seven, including for example, “greatest annual energy savings for lighting retrofits,” “highest percentage of annual energy savings in a project,” “largest number of facility projects,” and “best use of lighting controls in a single building.”  (See sidebar for a full list of categories including the new Innovative Categories.) The Campaign informs facility owners and managers about energy and cost savings opportunities in high-efficiency interior lighting options for troffers, high-bay, low-bay, and suspended linear lighting systems, lighting controls, and integrated systems. Facility owners and managers can apply for recognition of their installation or retrofit projects in any of these categories.

We’ve always had a controls aspect to the program,” said Michael Myer of the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, technical lead for the Interior Lighting Campaign. “We’re moving into a systems world. With smart devices, controls can be implemented in a way that interacts with more than one system at a time. These new categories recognize that we can capitalize on these interactions for greater energy savings and efficiency.

ILC Recognition Categories
  Greatest Annual Energy Savings for Lighting Retrofits
  - Small Project: <25 luminaires replaced
  - Medium Project: 25 ≤ luminaires replaced ≤ 200
  - Large Project: > 200 luminaires replaced
  Highest Percentage of Annual Energy Savings for Lighting Retrofits
  - Small Project: <25 luminaires replaced
  - Medium Project: 25 ≤ luminaires replaced ≤ 200
  - Large Project: > 200 luminaires replaced
  Greatest Annual Energy Savings for Lighting in New Construction
  - Small Project: <25 luminaires replaced
  - Medium Project: 25 ≤ luminaires replaced ≤ 200
  - Large Project: > 200 luminaires replaced
  Over-Arching Category
  - Best Use of Lighting Controls in a Single Building
  - Largest Number of Facility Projects
  - Great Portfolio-wide Annual Energy Savings
  Exemplary Recognition Sector Category
  Innovative Categories - NEW!
  - Integrated Controls Plug Loads and Lighting Systems
  - Integrated Controls for HVAC and Lighting Systems
  - Other Integrated Systems and Lighting

Many buildings are now equipped with occupancy sensors that turn off (or reduce) the lighting when movement is no longer detected in a space (thus, it is assumed to be empty). It is now possible to use those same occupancy sensors to curtail other loads or energy uses in the space. For example, the same occupancy sensor that sends a signal to the light fixture to turn off (or reduce) the lighting could send a signal to the HVAC controller to setback the air temperature (to warm up or cool down the space slightly, depending on the season) or turn off plug loads like a desk lamp or printer.

Myer pointed out several of the advantages of these integrated systems, including cost savings, simplicity, and possibly better performance. “If you need two sensors – one for lights and one for plug load - that’s an increased cost. If the lighting sensor can also control the plug load, that’s a savings.” Myer noted that a ceiling location, which is where lighting occupancy sensors are typically positioned, is also an ideal sensor location for plug loads. Sensors located at or near wall outlets and power strips are often blocked from full line-of-sight monitoring of the room by furniture and walls.

About 93% of the energy use in a commercial office building falls into three categories: HVAC (about 40%), plugs and process loads (about 33%), and lighting (about 20%). Lighting energy use has been decreasing over the last few years relative to plug and process loads so there is greater interest in encouraging the use of integrated controls that can control the HVAC and/or plug loads while at the same time interfacing with the lighting systems. In addition to “Integrated Controls for Plug Loads and Lighting Systems” and “Integrated Controls for HVAC and Lighting Systems,” an additional new category, “Other Integrated Systems and Lighting,” includes what might be referred to as “very smart” sensors capable of capturing data for use in heat mapping or asset tracking.

Myer acknowledged that adding these new innovative categories to the recognition submission process provides insights into who is implementing the technology and how it is being used... “We hope to get an idea of what people are doing out there and how they are doing it,” said Myer. Although submissions for the other categories ask for specific energy-savings numbers, Myer noted that the application process for these new categories can be descriptive rather than quantitative. “We don’t necessarily expect actual performance numbers on these integrative controls projects, because unless you’ve sub-metered your building to a very   fine degree, it will be hard to collect accurate data. However, even without extensive performance data, we’d still like people to submit an application so we can learn about their projects.”

This is an exciting, new addition to the Campaign, which started in 2015.  As of August 2018, ILC participants have logged or completed upgrades or installations of nearly 2.85 million high-efficiency lighting and control systems.  These installations are expected to save over $68 million annually in electricity costs through energy use savings of nearly 641 million kWh – roughly the energy use of 60,000 homes. 

This year’s recognized Participants will be acknowledged at the annual event hosted by the Illuminating Engineering Society during its 2019 Annual Conference, August 8-10, 2019, at the Omni Louisville Hotel, in Louisville, KY. 

Applications are being accepted now through April 16 for consideration for the 2019 recognition event.  Apply Today!

The Interior Lighting Campaign (ILC) is designed to help facility owners and managers take advantage of savings opportunities from high efficiency interior lighting solutions. Campaign organizers include the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES), the International Facility Management Association (IFMA), interNational Association of Lighting Management Companies (NALMCO), U.S. General Services Administration (GSA), and the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).