Lutron, a company pioneering in the invention of the first solid-state dimmer (1961) and the first product to control all light sources without additional interfaces (2001) is now offering Integrated guestroom solutions for the hospitality industry. Javier Segovia, Sales Director and Manjul Trehan, Director (Sales) India, explain the new wireless technology which makes the room settings flexible.
The wireless technology provides solutions to the hotel owners savings in terms of energy, labour and maintenance and to hotel guests in terms of room ambiance and comfort. Most often while changing the layout and settings of a guestroom or any room, the light fixtures and switches stay where they are unless the owner is willing to invest time and money on breaking into the wall, removing the concealed wiring and fitting it else where. With the wireless technology, all one needs to do is remove the controller and put it back in at the new location. This is as simple as pulling a card out of a wall socket. The only difference being that both the card and the reader can be taken out without causing damage to the wall and put up on another wall without delay.
This capability of being able to change not just the settings of the fixtures but also the switches controlling them is the need of the day in the current hospitality industry. This is a patented Lutron technology called ‘Clear Connect’. It consumes battery only when in use and its operations are as simple as pressing a button. As soon as the button is pressed, the message from one device to the other takes less than a second. The battery is expected to last for 10 years as the power consumption is very low and the product is very safe as it communicates in less than a second.
The technology is safe, adaptable to corporate and residential settings as well. In terms of a corporate setting, an antenna can be installed in the false ceiling while all the other components can be wireless. If a room is closed off, one can still operate the lights etc with a wireless sensor and a wireless belay sensor. Additionally, it is also possible to have a wireless switch on the glass partitions or doors etc. Every fixture will be controlled by Lutron without any cables. This eliminates the need to rewire everything everytime there is a change of function or layout or room setting. This also does away with the problem of employing labour for wiring or dismantling and putting up walls.
The technology is based on the Radio Frequencies and Lutorn has designed its systems to use 365 frequency (in India). This is a restricted band which is not open to most of the other wireless systems. Between the Maine and FM, this is the safest frequency and not as crowded as 2.20 Giga hertz.
The largest well known installation from the company is the Empire State Building which uses 40,000 RF installations. The technology is available with a manual which is simple and self explanatory. Lutron to an extent does specify the design technicalities to the MEP consultants, designers & architects and helps explain the execution of the job to a builder or the contractor and also provides line drawings. We also help the end user programme it according to their requirement. All the instructions are in writing and contractors are expected to read them properly. Whenever and wherever possible, Lutron tries to visit the site and ensure that the instructions are being followed properly.
The company provides lighting control and blind control solutions for the high end as well as the medium and lower end market segments. The company is poised to launch a new retrofit product to save energy in all segments from hospitals & hotels to residential.