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Investment in Lighting: Billions of Rubles Returned or Effective Investment

Energy-saving lighting will allow Russia to annually save almost $3 billion and 53.2 terawatt-hours of electricity, which is almost half the electricity used in this country on lighting, alone. Globally, the attainable economy is estimated at $110 billion, and 5 percent of power consumption.

According to the UN Environment Program (UNEP) report, renouncing inefficient lighting will also reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 16.9 million tons of CO2-equivalent per year, emissions of mercury – by 979.8 kilogrammes, SO2 and NO – by 31.5 and 58.3 thousand tonnes.

There are many known types of lighting for different purposes, each of them offering great opportunities for saving energy. According to the International Energy Agency, the greatest share of energy consumed for lighting, is used by commercial buildings (43 percent), followed by: residential buildings (31 percent), industrial buildings (18 percent) and outdoor lighting (8 percent).

About 2.4 million barrels of oil per day is used for household lighting in developing countries and for the operation of vehicle lights. The IEA estimates that at least 38 percent of the world's energy consumption for lighting can be saved through increased use of efficient lighting technologies. Countries all over the world are working on projects to upgrade their lighting systems. It is not incidental that UNEP and the Global Environment Facility (GEF) intend to replace all incandescent bulbs in the world with more sophisticated compact fluorescent and LED ones by 2016.

  • In our country, it is premature to talk about a full-scale transition to modern lighting – we have yet to increase our body of knowledge on the benefits of such technologies. Moreover, local examples of successful implementation must first be assessed against the backdrop of huge initial investments and only then as a cost-effective project.
  • Historically, before the collapse of the Soviet Union, the lighting engineering sector of the country was characterized by a large scale production of lighting fittings and a fleet of existing lighting installations. Some 13 percent of all electricity generated in the country (about 220 billion kWh which accounted for about 1.5 billion lighting points), used to be consumed for the purposes of lighting. The total installed capacity amounted to 150 million kW. Industrial lighting received much more attention than the public and commercial buildings, which led to inflated cost of electricity per unit of lighting energy and was many times higher than in foreign countries.

Years later, with Russia emerging in the global market, the former State Planning system collapsed, and the economy underwent a reform, yet a new market-led system failed to develop. Since the end of 2009, our country has embarked on energy conservation within the State in conformity with the law "On energy saving and energy efficiency and on Amendments to Certain Legislative Acts of the Russian Federation." The document now provides a list of measures aimed at saving resources, including the use of new technologies in lighting.

Moscow and St. Petersburg, followed by other regions of the country, immediately responded to the law and formed long-term target-oriented programmes with prescribed phased implementation over the years to come.

It is noteworthy that the capital has already something to boast of: the energy saving programme has been in place in Moscow since January 2010. It is assumed that in five years, all public institutions will reduce resource consumption by at least 15 percent compared with the actual consumption in 2009. In 2020, the energy component of GDP has to be at least 40 percent lower than in 2007. The 16,500 public sector facilities – administrative buildings, schools, kindergartens, etc. – will be switched over to the saving mode. Energy conservation measures have paid off handsomely. According to Eugene Sklyarov, Head of Moscow Fuel and Energy Sector, the cost of energy-saving measures of urban institutions in the first half of 2012 exceeded 11 billion rubles, which helped save electricity to the tune of 99 million kWh over the said period (50 percent of the planned reduction in the year).

Perhaps the most noticeable effect of energy-saving can be achieved by using advanced lighting technologies in industry – it is an important component of successful continuous operation of production. In Russian companies lighting accounts for 35-40 percent of total energy consumption. In this case, the vast majority of the areas concerned are illuminated with the use of outdated technologies, which results in significant energy costs.

In contrast, high colour rendering, stable luminous flux, and reliability of LED lighting systems throughout their entire service life – all this affects the productivity, product quality and the preservation of consumer properties.

The Kirov Plant in St. Petersburg was among the first large-scale production enterprises that began to deploy energy-saving lighting in local projects, installing energy-saving lighting systems on the manufacturing floor. In the autumn of 2012, the main tractor assembly line of Petersburg Tractor Plant (a subsidiary of Kirov Plant JSC) replaced gas-discharge lamps with LEDs. A few months later, the company implemented an energy-saving lighting system integration pilot project at another subsidiary – the manufacturing area of Petrostal metallurgical plant. That project featured a comprehensive approach involving project pre-selection meetings at the plant accompanied by calculations using the specialized DIALux* program, which provided for planning, calculation and design lighting.

The selection of lighting equipment for the production unit was made taking account of the premises’ dimensions, the technical requirements, regulations and rules which helped ensure the most effective operation of the devices at the lowest possible power consumption. The new lighting equipment, which is designed to reduce energy consumption by 5 times, will pay off within two years.

The project has enabled the lighting system of the oxygen operating department at the Petrostal plant to be completely updated. Technically outdated gas discharge lamps on the site have been substituted by energy-saving equipment and modern LED lighting systems. Given that the life cycle of the lighting systems is at least 5 years, the Kirov Plant will also save money on maintenance of components of the lighting system, which for a long time will not require replacement, inspection or repair.

The cost of a new lighting system for the Petrostal plant production area amounted to some 2 million rubles. Based on the experience gained and the results of using energy-saving lighting systems, equipping production facilities with modern energy efficient lighting systems will continue across the Kirov plant.

Of course, data on the cost of lighting for the entire duration of the lighting systems’ operation (that is, the cost of lighting maintenance, including the costs of equipment, energy, installation and maintenance) are much less available and, therefore, are much less obvious, to serve as a determining factor in decisions on purchasing equipment. This issue is a multidimensional one, as customers focus on the minimum cost for the equipment and taking simple and operational decisions that will help do the job on time and at a minimal cost.

One should also consider the option of using LED equipment on construction sites that need full-scale lighting as early as at the stage of arranging the temporary power supply scheme or arranging a power supply from local sources. As noted by a representative of one of the Russian companies that operated such facilities, LED lighting systems, working in a range of input voltages from 10 to 20 volts have been used in the construction of one of such facilities for operation based on an unstable AC power supply or total lack of one, when there is need to illuminate the site for a long time on batteries. In such cases, the use of low-voltage LED lighting systems requires extra wiring from the batteries.

The use of low voltage LED lighting systems can significantly lessen the load on the network while providing a better quality of lighting: rechargeable batteries are the only requirement for the operation of low-voltage LED lighting.

Significant energy savings, long off-line operation, a wide range of operation conditions – this is a far from exhaustive list of the benefits of using low voltage LED lighting systems.

Special working conditions exist in warehouses, and the lighting systems used there should not only take into account all the complexity of the premises, but also guarantee the owner a saving in energy costs and guarantee the safety of the products in storage.

Thus, AtomSvet developed LED lighting systems, which feature several characteristics that give them a competitive edge compared with their counterparts in the market.

Typically, storage lamps are installed high up, where repair is difficult and premature lamp failure, even with a valid warranty, may result in significant financial cost to repair or replace it,- said Vadim Dadyka, General Director of AtomSvet LLC.- In addition, our products include an LED driver designed specifically for use in unstable networks (a wide range of supply voltage: 150-265V, protection against over-voltage up to 800V, short circuit protection). The reliable LED driver and its ability to cope with an unstable voltage supply is one of the main guarantees of a stable operation and fail-safe performance of AtomSvet® LED lighting systems throughout the stated period of operation). It is worth noting that the technology used by the company presupposes a reliable system of heat dissipation, temperature control function and a guaranteed operation at low temperatures down to -60 °C.

According to Vadim Dadyka, in conformity with the current construction norms and rules, under a general lighting system required for average accuracy work on subjects which have a low contrast against their background, the illumination should be at least 200 lux. To achieve such a parameter in a 70 x 30 metre warehouse with a ceiling height of 8 metres, 55 HPS 250W lamps would normally be required. Such a placement of lighting systems enables uniform illumination of the work surface at a given level to be achieved.

The same parameters and illumination uniformity are achieved at the location with a similar arrangement scheme of 55 AtomSvet® Space LED lighting systems. And that is where the main advantage lies: after 2-plus years a LED lighting system not only its purchase cost, but it is starting to bring substantial revenue. In five years, the system of warehouse lighting consisting of 55 LED lighting systems can bring more over 3,500,000 rubles. In addition, there is saving in labour and financial resources spent in replacing lamps while storage and class I hazard waste disposal costs disappear.

The advantages of such lamps are highly appreciated by customers. For instance, Emil Mukhametshin, head of the international chemical company, Chemicals (Noyabrsk city) said that in their choice of lighting systems for manufacturing facilities of the company they had been guided by the criteria of the optimum price and the explosion-proof version of lighting systems.

- We are a customer and an end user of such lamps, - said E. Mukhametshin. - Our company is engaged in manufacture of oilfield chemicals. Such explosion-hazard prone areas are subject to state regulatory documents and place strict requirement on organization level and equipment. We acquired 18 lighting systems, installing them on a floor area of 550 square metres. Although it is too early to speak of any economic effect, we try to use advanced technology in everything, from high quality standards imposed on the equipment, up to competently organized systems of lighting, power and heat consumption. We are currently preparing a project to install a manufacturing grade CCTV system and production base area lighting with diode lamps. In my opinion, the LED technology has a great future due to its great advantages over the previous generation technologies. For example, in contrast to the previous energy-saving lighting systems they do not “twinkle”, do not create visual discomfort, and do not suffer a light delay at startup.

Lighting quality is coming to the fore. Obviously, the price of LEDs as a selection criterion will gradually become a secondary consideration. According to experts, by 2020 the price of LED lighting systems, which is still at a high level, will be reduced by 60-70 per cent.

– The technical problems relating to LED lighting systems have largely been solved; all manufacturers are quality conscious,believes Catherine Plattseva, Modern Lighting Project Development Manager. – It is obvious that the market share of LED lighting systems is growing, and in the near future, we can expect an expansion of the range of LED products, to ensure that the consumer has a choice.

Efficient lighting technologies have been proved in operation and are widely available in the market. In the future it will be possible to achieve significant additional energy savings through the use of semiconductor based lighting systems, a very promising technology, which has already found a niche in the global lighting market and is now moving forward rapidly.

* The programme was developed in 1994 by DIAL GmbH (Deutche Institut fur Angewandte Lichttechnik) – German Institute for Applied lighting. The programme uses the data of any lighting systems manufacturers and takes into account all modern requirements for the lighting design and computation. DIALux supports international and national standards of European countries.

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Video of the manufacturing process and advantages of AtomSvet® LED lighting fixtures

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