I recently had the opportunity to interview Eric Jerger, VP and GM, Indoor Lighting, Cooper Lighting Solutions, for an article I’m writing for tED Magazine’s March 2022 issue. The topic: field-adjustable luminaires. Transcript follows.
DiLouie: How would you define a field-adjustable luminaire?
Jerger: A field-adjustable luminaire allows users and installers the ability to choose from a range of color temperatures and/or lumens with a simple switch on the product.
DiLouie: How would you characterize demand for field-adjustable luminaires, and would you consider this category a trend?
Jerger: The demand for field-adjustable luminaires continues to grow as distributors are maximizing limited warehouse space. Field-selectable luminaires offer multiple products in one, saving distributors money by stocking less inventory while still being able to meet the needs of the customers.
DiLouie: How does the field adjustable mechanism work, who does it, and how can it be changed in the future after installation?
Jerger: Field-selectable color temperature and lumens can be controlled with a flip of simple switch that is located on the luminaire. The switch can be adjusted during installation or after installation by any customer at any time to set the color temperature and/or lumens to their desired preference.
DiLouie: What adjustability is most popular? Lumens/Wattage, CCT, light distribution, or some combination of these?
Jerger: In the lighting industry, customers prefer to have the ability to change color temperature and lumens as these luminaire attributes can lead to desirable benefits such as increased productivity, enhanced mood, and alertness, as well as improved health and well-being. Customer preference for selectable lumens or selectable color temperature or both depends on the application. For example in Industrial applications, customers typically only need selectable lumens from their high bay fixtures.
DiLouie: What lighting products are covered in this category? Troffers, downlights…? Is it only indoor, or are there outdoor products with this capability as well?
Jerger: Field-selectable color temperature and lumens are features that spans across multiple product categories in the lighting industry and will only continue to grow in the future. Recessed downlights, undercabinet fixtures, troffers, linear lighting, and even high bays are some examples of indoor solutions.
Indoor has been the predominant space for field-selectable products, however this emerging trend is also being requested by customers in outdoor products including residential floodlights, wall packs and canopy lighting luminaires.
DiLouie: What are the benefits of field-adjustable luminaires for electrical contractors?
Jerger: For contractors, the benefits of field-selectable products include being able to create the most optimal space for the customer during installation, as they will be able to choose with the customer their ideal LED color temperature and lumen output. In addition, the contractor knows they have installed a low maintenance product that will likely not require them to return to the job site. Also, for the contractor, field-selectable products make their jobs easier by not having to carry multiple variations of products.
DiLouie: For the contractor and owner, what are typical and ideal applications? Is there a “killer app” for this product?
Jerger: Field-selectable products can be used everywhere. Whether it’s a residential homeowner or a schoolteacher in an education environment or a facility manager in a warehouse, field-selectable products are simple for contractors to install while providing long-lasting benefits in a multitude of applications.
We’re not aware of a “killer app” for field-selectable products.
For residential applications, Cooper Lighting Solutions does have a HALO Home mobile app that is user-friendly and lets homeowners easily control their home’s lighting from anywhere in the world.
For commercial applications, Cooper Lighting Solutions does have a WaveLinx mobile app that allows the user to control color temperature and lumens.
DiLouie: Looking more closely regarding what’s in it for distributors, what types and level of cost and inventory savings can be realized, and what additional value can they offer to customers?
Jerger: With field selectable products, distributors are able to optimize their inventory, increase their turns, and likely provide better service to their customers. Cost and inventory savings would depend on the exact use case.
DiLouie: As typically these luminaires impose a cost premium, they have to justify additional value. Under what application situations would they not prove desirable?
Jerger: Examples would be projects where the lighting fixtures are highly specified to have a specific lumen and/or color temperature and thus the designer never intended for them to be changed.
DiLouie: What do you see as the future of this category in 3-5 years? Do you believe it will grow to mainstream adoption, or do you see it growing to serve a specific market willing to pay for the additional flexibility?
Jerger: We believe that in the next 3 to 5 years there will be an increase in customer adoption of field-selectable products, which will have growing applicability in a multitude of vertical applications.
DiLouie: If you could tell the entire electrical industry just one thing about field-adjustable luminaires, what would it be?
Jerger: Field-selectable technology empowers users to adapt to the every-changing needs of a space, creating the most optimal lighting experience at any time.