Football oval at night

Sport is an integral part of society and with continued investment in facilities and training, Australia consistently ranks highly on the world stage. However, with the ongoing focus on ways to mitigate the pending climate crises, more needs to be done concerning sustainability in the sector.

For many councils sustainability is now a central theme, with goals of less waste and net zero emissions, with one area often under the microscope – lighting.

The problem with lighting

Lighting consumes a significant amount of energy, therefore correct management of these assets can make a noticeable contribution.

Moving from metal halide to LED lighting has made considerable progress, but there’s still more that can – and should – be done.

Designing products that can benefit future generations takes effort and resources and does not happen by default. This is why the design phase is challenging and needs to be approached with a ‘future’ mindset in order to be successful.

The key areas to consider are:

  1. Efficiency
  2. Longevity
  3. Recyclability

Efficiency

Efficiency means how much output (light) is gotten from the input (electricity). This number needs to include the lumens/watt, which is the overall efficiency and the lux on the ground.

In order to get a measure of overall performance of a lamp, both need to be known in order to make a considered decision. The design and construction of the lamp influences the numbers, and results need to be backed up by testing from an accredited laboratory.

Selection of the right LED chip, alongside the design of the optics, is a very specialised field, and when done carelessly results in sub-par performance that wastes energy long into the future.

Longevity

Longevity is simply how long the product will last. Whilst this is very difficult to know up front (particularly for a new product) an indication will be found in the warranty and back-up offered by the supplier.

If a known, reputable supplier is offering a five year warranty, a new, unproven supplier offering a 15 year warranty may need to provide more supporting evidence to back up the claim. With the simple construction of LED lamps, essentially there are only two components that generally fail – the LED chip and the driver.

If the chips fail, the light is usually disposed of, but the drivers are replaceable in most instances. Again, with the simplicity of lighting components, there is often a direct correlation between cost and longevity i.e. better components last longer.

Recyclability

Recyclability has generally involved stripping down the lights to their respective components – aluminium heatsink and PCB, copper cables, moulded optics etc. However, this is seldom done properly and more often than not, the whole light ends up in landfill.

A new alternative is now emerging, focusing on the life circle whereby the defective parts are replaced and the module can continue being used. This is an important step, but the process needs to start at the design phase of the light so that it is repairable with modular components, since having a light that has to be sent back to Europe for specialist repair is not very economical.

Legacy Lighting believes all three elements are crucial for a sustainable future, ensuring its products are efficient, long lasting and ‘re-circleable’ with intent and by design – looking out for future generations.

This sponsored editorial is brought to you by Legacy Lighting. For more information, visit legacysportlighting.com.

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