New ballast dimming switch developed

Apr 20, 2006

U.S. scientists say they've developed a simple, cost-effective, energy-saving device designed to "harvest" daylight automatically.

The device -- The DaySwitch -- was designed at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute's Lighting Research Center in Troy, N.Y., as an alternative to traditional dimming ballast systems that adjust light levels by reducing lamp current.

"The DaySwitch is designed to build end-use efficiency by reducing light energy usage in commercial buildings and maintaining occupant satisfaction," said Peter Morante, director of energy programs at the LRC. "It is estimated the DaySwitch will be able to reduce lighting energy consumption by 30 percent in buildings with significant daylight contribution through windows or skylights, allowing for a payback period of approximately three years."

LRC researchers say the new switch works with all conventional fluorescent ballasts and, because of its simple circuitry, the cost to produce the device is minimal and far less expensive than traditional daylighting control systems that utilize dimming ballasts.

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that lighting accounts for one-quarter of the total energy consumed by U.S. commercial businesses.

The initial research appears in the journal Lighting Research & Technology.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Ford recalls 432K cars because of software problem

Related Stories

Researcher proposes a new energy efficiency measurement

5 hours ago

Rick Larrick has been on a crusade to help people better understand how much energy they use. A professor with Duke University's Fuqua School of Business, in 2008 Larrick and Fuqua colleague Jack Soll proposed ...

Radar guards against space debris

Jul 01, 2015

Space debris poses a growing threat to satellites and other spacecraft, which could be damaged in the event of a collision. A new German space surveillance system, schedu- led to go into operation in 2018, will help to prevent ...

Recommended for you

Cuba's new wifi hotspots attract eager users

3 hours ago

Near the popular Hotel Habana Libre in Cuba's capital, a gaggle of young people on cellphones, tablets and laptops log onto the new wifi hotspot—a small milestone in one of the least connected countries.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.