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BemStudio | Light Measurements

Bad news travels much quicker than good news. And in the social media age we live in, it travels lighting fast. A bad product review can do much damage to a company’s reputation, so it makes some lighting manufacturers a little uneasy when light meters are employed to determine the performance of their lamps.

If you missed our previous blog post about the importance of performing light measurements click on the link below:

The importance of measuring light

For the most part, light meters are extremely useful, as they help to determine whether an illuminance level is optimal or not. Although LED lamp manufacturers specify lumen output of all lamps as well as beam angle lux output from the source to a certain distance, light meters are still a viable tool to assist with:

Product validation: Whenever a lamp is bought the buyer looks at the specifications so that he buys the most suitable lamp to the application he wants. However, one thing is what the manufacturer claims about his products and another thing is how his products actually perform after they are installed in place. Performing light measurements after the installation is finished will allow, both the client and the service provider, to verify that the lamp output is what's expected.

Optimization: If artificial lighting is being used, it is being used for a specific purpose. Performing light measurements is the best way to ensure that purpose is being met. Not only that, but it allows for energy optimization and to determine healthy levels of lighting. Energy optimization has proven to be fundamental in saving costs. For example, it is safe to say that by switching from HPS lamps to LED many growers have saved millions in electricity bills.

However, here’s why lighting manufacturers worry when a light meter reading is the sole determinate of a product’s suitability: a light meter reading is only as good as the product, the user and reading technique, as well as the attention to its maintenance. Many retrofit jobs may be unsatisfactory as a result of inaccurate data retrieved from a light meter. The problem may not be in the lamp itself, but either in the decision-making process of selecting that specific lamp or because the light meter did not provide accurate readings.

Before performing light measurements several aspects must be considered. First, the selected light meter to perform the measuring must be able to provide accurate readings on the lamp spectrum. There are many light meters in the market for different functions, selecting the right one is crucial to obtain the desired results. Not only this, but the device must be properly calibrated otherwise its readings will be highly inaccurate. Still, the most important aspect is the device operator. Like any technical product, it takes a reasonable amount of understanding to operate a light meter correctly. Combine a user with limited understanding with an inadequate light meter and the probability of purchasing the right lamp for the task is very low.

So, before a lighting installation is done, the service-provider (normally the installer) draws up a quotation/specification to forecast the performance of the installation. In other words, a light plan report is prepared by the service provider to ensure he can meet the client's lighting needs. After that, light measurements or photometry are used to show whether the installation meets the forecasted performance. There are so many variables that affect the installation that a well defined measuring protocol is needed in order to safeguard the service provider and to guarantee client satisfaction.

Light measurements carried out in accordance with this protocol will then produce an assessment of the lighting installation that can then be compared with the light plan. This grants the client the lighting needs required to the service provider are indeed being met. To the service provider this allows to build up on reputation about the quality of their services and products.

Now that you know about this, it's time to understand why you should select BemStudio to get your light measurements performed:

• We offer one of the most competitive range of prices in the international market today regarding Light Measurements; • Our staff has several years of expertise working in the general and horticultural lighting industry; • We are available to go to wherever you need light measurements to be performed; • We will provide you with technical information to confront your lighting manufacturers in case their products are not performing as expected, or we can discuss it ourselves directly with your lighting manufacturer; • We can forecast ways to reduce your lighting costs through careful analysis of the obtained results and through our in-house light planning.

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