The 28th-annual installation of the Lightfair tradeshow, held May 9 to 11, 2017, in Philadelphia, opened with the 2017 Lightfair Innovation Awards. This year's program received 255 product submissions, entered across 14 categories. The winners from each category—with three of those also selected for the program's top honors, plus one additional judges' citation—demonstrated innovative new technologies, streamlined design, and the continuing prevalence of IoT in luminaires and sensors.

Entries were reviewed by a jury of lighting design professionals: Maureen Moran from MCLA Architectural Lighting Design, Sarah Schonour from CannonDesign, Coffield King, Jr. from Gilmore Lighting Design, Renée Cooley from Cooley Monato Studio, Jered Widmer from The Lighting Practice, Christy Rogers from EwingCole, and Susannah Zweighaft from AKF Lighting Design.

The following products received the competition’s highest honors:

Most Innovative Product of the Year: ZipThree 707 Wall Mount, Vode LightingSuitable for ceiling wash or wall grazing applications in hospitality, commercial, and office spaces, this luminaire features an ultra-low profile of just 0.27"—a design and technical element that impressed this year's judges, who “[recognized]...its thin, sleek, beautiful design,” and “excellent lighting effect both up and down.” The bi-directional fixture comes in 27000K, 3000K, 3500K, 4000K, at a CRI of 80- or 90-plus, and is available in rail lengths of 12", 24", 36", 48", 60", and 72", with surface- or zero-mounting options. It uses a 120V/277V power source; dimming options include zero-to-10V, DALI, DMX, and Lutron Hi-Lume.

Design Excellence Award: Reflections, Element by Tech Lighting This decorative recessed dome features a scalloped petal design for indirect LED illumination in 5"-, 8"-, and 12"-diameter apertures and is fitted with 9.2W, 15.9W, and 31.8W LEDs respectively. Offered at 2700K, 3000K, and 3500K or warm color dimming from 3000K down to 1800K with a minimum CRI of 90, this luminaire is dimmable zero-to-10V. The judges were impressed by the “architectural approach to the downlight interior.” This luminaire was featured on page 48 of Architectural Lighting’s 2017 Product Issue.

Technical Innovation Award: Laser Light SMD, Soraa Laser • This 0.27" by 0.27" device is a surface mounted fixture that uses the company's proprietary semi-polar GaN laser diodes with phosphor technology. Delivering up to 500 lumens from a 300 micron spot, a laser diode excites a phosphor target to create a white light output that is 100 times greater than that of an LED, according to the manufacturer. The judges praised the product for its “promising look at technology beyond the current LED,” also noting that, “breaking an optical barrier to provide a 2-degree beam could be extraordinary for certain applications.”

Judges' Citation Award: AS7221, AMS AGThe AS7221 is an integrated white-tunable smart lighting manager with an embedded tri-stimulus CIE XYZ color sensor for direct color coordinate mapping. The network-enabled module can also control luminaires through zero-to-10V, pulse width modulation (PWM), and analog dimming. The judges commended AMS for creating “a product that truly represents the future of sensor technology," and added that they could "finally see the path toward connected lighting where lighting can be the vehicle for Big Data and an IC chip can sense, analyze and respond to a whole host of gathered input.”

The remaining 11 category winners are:

Research Publications, Non-Control Software, and Measuring Devices: Licaso, Lighting AnalystsThis climate-based annual daylight simulation software can be applied as an add-on to AGi32 and Autodesk Revit with ElumTools to determine aggregate illumination of every hour of daylight in specific rooms of existing building models. The program calculates workplane illuminance time in minutes instead of hours or days. It produces LEED v4 and LM-83 daylight metric calculations in minutes. This lighting software was featured on page 78 of Architectural Lighting’s 2017 Product Issue.

Conventional, Retrofit, and Replacement LED Lamps: Soraa Sky BR30, SoraaThis programmable smart LED lamp follows the body's natural circadian rhythm with a full-spectrum of cool to warm color temperatures that mimic the sun through the addition and absence of blue light. Sky uses the company's violet LEDs as well as its BlueFree options for the evening in order to help promote better sleep. Users can customize and manage the fixture—which communicate with each other over electrical wires with HomePlug Green PHY technology—through Soraa's smartphone application. A standard Dynamic White + Sky Smart Snap module provides consistent white light, while additional modules can enable smart functions via sensors such as remote or automatic control.

Ballasts, Transformers, Drivers, Systems, and Kits: BAC 75 EM10 LED Combo Driver, Philips • This low-profile combination AC and Emergency LED driver comes in a 75W AC output and a 10W emergency output. It offers the company's SimpleSet configuration as well as 1 percent dimming, and a 90 minute emergency run time. Judges praised the product for its “clean, simple, easily wired approach to integrating the emergency back-up battery function into drivers for OEM manufacturers.”
(Editor's Note: At present, Philips has brought a 40W version of this product to market; the 75W version is forthcoming.)

Indoor Decorative, Task Lights, Track, Undercabinet and Shelf: Nod, XAL Inc Created by Japanese designer Daisuke Kitagawa, this minimalist style pendant has a cone-shaped head that can tilt at a vertical range of 180 degrees, with a 330 degree rotation to provide up or downlight. Nod is fitted with a 10W LED and available in 2700K or 3000K at a CRI of 80-plus, delivering 1,040 or 1,110 lumens depending on color temperature. The fixture runs on 220V-to-240V, and is zero-to-10V dimmable. The judges commended the fixture as a “simple, understated, and highly flexible lighting solution.”

Parking, Roadway, and Area Luminaires: Arini, HessAmerica Arini is offered in three pole styles: straight, inclined, or curved. The light engine uses 56W in 3000K and 4000K with a CRI of 80. It provides 4,144 to 5,678 delivered lumens depending on distribution and color temperature. A cast knuckle provides positive or negative 60-degree horizontal and negative 90- through positive 40-degree vertical adjustability. Optics include three rotationally symmetric distributions and two elliptical beam patterns. This luminaire was featured on page 70 of Architectural Lighting’s 2017 Product Issue.

Sports, Step, Landscape, Pool, and Fountain Luminaires: Mode Outdoor Path/Flood Light, Tech Lighting • This split floodlight has two semi-circular arms that can be used for path-, wall-, and ceiling applications. Available in 27000K, 3000K, 3500K, and 4000K at a CRI of 90, the 16W fixture delivers a total of 1,488 lumens (744 lumens per lamp). Each arm can be tilted to 185 degrees and rotated 359 degrees; the luminaire comes in multiple stem lengths including 10", 14", 20" and 26".

Controls: Components, Sensors, Interfaces, and Software: Smart Sensor Module (SSM), Samsung ElectronicsIncorporated radar technology allows Samsung's Smart Sensor Module to detect even the smallest of changes in a space, such as breathing. The 2.7"-by-0.6"-by-0.9" sensor is fitted with a Bluetooth module for smartphone control and has dimming capabilities—zero-to-10V or DALI—suitable for luminaires or IoT applications. The sensor module can be installed inside a diffuser.

Dynamic Color, Theatrical, Cove, Strips, and Tape: Tile Tunable White, Cooledge LightingThis thin, 12"-by-12" modular tile system offers tunable white lighting that can be arranged into different configurations using snap connectors. The luminaire comes in a range of color temperatures from 2700K to 5700K at a CRI of 90-plus, and can deliver 150, 300, or 600 lumens per tile. Judges noted the Tile Tunable White's “shallow, cut-able, and expandable,” physical features that allows for a broad range of installations. The fixture is dimmable down to one percent.

Industrial, Vandal, Emergency, and Exit: Craft, Zumtobel The Craft family of high bays come in two versions: Craft M (shown) and Craft L. Both are available with either a narrow beam distribution designed specifically for warehouse shelving or a wide beam option for manufacturing/production areas. The fixtures operate between minus 104 F to 131 F. Powdercoated internal cooling ribs provide thermal management and aid in minimal dust accumulation. This luminaire was featured on page 54 of Architectural Lighting’s 2017 Product Issue.

Control and Distribution Systems, Connectivity, and Analytics: myRoom Vue, LutronMyRoom Vue is a web-based dashboard that controls Lutron's myRoom, a family of guestroom control systems that can manage the illumination, temperature, and shading of a space. The software can be used on a tablet or desktop browser and helps users troubleshoot, manage, and monitor the performance of multiple fixtures. The product is “more than a granular room controller and simple user interface,” according to the judges, “It is also part of a scalable, responsive, building asset management system.”

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