Project Detail


Alabaster Caverns State Park

Freedom, OK United States

Intense Lighting, Inc.


Project Description

A highly unique and challenging installation of Intense Lighting's new LED V-Rail Handrail System created an energy efficient, ideal lighting and handrail solution inside a cave visited daily by tourists in rural Oklahoma. For more than a decade, visitors relied on a T-5 fluorescent handrail system to better traverse the 330 steps down into the cave that extends ¾ of a mile long. However, the system began to corrode where the poles entered the ground because gypsum is extremely alkaline. It was also emanating enough heat from the light source that moss was beginning to grow, which can offset the natural balance inside this living cave. These issues, compounded with maintenance troubles that included lights burning out and lenses coming off the handrails quickly became a safety hazard and made the need for a new system all too apparent.

In 2010, the Oklahoma Department of Tourism decided to call in Cy Nowkhah, an engineer and project manager with Flynt & Kallenberger Engineering in Broken Arrow, OK whom they had worked with in the past. They asked him to design a new lighting system and find the right product line for a better handrail solution. He turned to colleague Bob Smith of Smith Lighting Sales in Tulsa for ideas. Smith immediately suggested Intense Lighting’s LED V-Rail System featuring a sleek, minimalistic design and high efficiency, low-energy LED lighting—everything this job required to address the challenges posed.

A request for samples was submitted and Intense Lighting’s VP of Sales Tom Elam got involved because of the unique challenges installing in a cave environment were sure to bring. “We came in and initially proposed a concrete base with a PVC pad with our aluminum pole to get everything above ground level,” Elam says. “We knew they had a tight budget and we were trying to provide cost-effective solutions. They liked our plan because we could install the Lutron driver right inside the post that works the LED. Although the job was originally bid with our original V-Rail system that features aluminum poles, it made more sense to replace it with our recently launched Gen 2 version, which comes with stainless steel poles. This option has created a much stronger, long-term solution for this project.”


Project Details

Alabaster Caverns State Park
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Project Team:
    Cy Nowkah, Engineer, Flynt & Kallenberger; Jason Bridgeman, Contractor/Installer, BridgePoint Electric; Bob Smith, Lighting Agent, Smith Lighting Sales; Tom Elam, Sales, Intense Lighting
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Year Completed:
Project Size:
    610 sq ft

Specified Products

Intense Lighting, Inc. LED V-Rail System, Gen 2

The V-Rail product line of solid-state luminaries offer sleek, minimalistic, styles that are uniquely designed to illuminate stairways, ramps and paths. The V-Rail products provide enough light to meet the minimum illumination of 10 fc (108 lux) as measured on the walking surface, and as mandated by the NFPA 101 Life Safety Code. V-Rail is an extremely energy efficient product and offers the highest lumens per watt in the industry.

The V-Rail Gen 2 now offers a more robust and seamless look, offering the clean architectural elements our customers desired. The new version provides the same unrivaled performance and efficiency that lighting designers discovered with the original V-Rail family, which includes the IVR2 and the IVR2-RPS but with several new upgrades.

The V-Rail Gen2 offers many visual and functional enhancements to the product line that include the following:

•An all-new, one piece extruded aluminum inner rail core that increases strength and thermal management

•A complete and seamless solid assembly of the top rail section from the elimination of spacer tubes

•A clean, unobtrusive overall appearance from the elimination of hex screws on the outer lens

•Decrease in lens aperture to 160° provides additional glare control and cut-off

•All extruded top rail construction materials are made in the U.S.A.

Intense lighting also now offers custom design and custom fabricated rail systems with this product line, giving designers more options than ever before.



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