DOE Releases New GATEWAY Report on Tunable Lighting in a Senior-Care Facility

The U.S. Department of Energy's GATEWAY program has released a new report on a pilot installation of tunable-white LED systems at a senior-care facility in Sacramento, CA. The installation took place at the ACC Care Center and was conducted by the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD), which invited GATEWAY to document the performance of the new lighting systems. Two of the primary goals identified by SMUD and ACC were to learn more about how tunable-white lighting affects the sleep patterns, nighttime safety, and other behaviors of the residents; and to better equip the staff to provide excellent care by improving the quality of lighting relative to the incumbent system.

Among the findings:

  • Energy savings for the tunable LED luminaires in the corridors was 45% relative to the incumbent fluorescent system, based on the reduced power, but increased to 68% when the automatic dimming was considered.

  • Illuminance levels in resident rooms and bathrooms were below industry standards with the incumbent fluorescent system, but exceeded Illuminating Engineering Society recommendations for the over-65 age group with the LED system.

  • Color consistency for the tunable LED luminaires used in the corridors, nurse station, family room, and administrator's office was very good between luminaires and over the dimming range.

  • The staff of the senior-care facility documented important health-related benefits that may have been attributable, at least in part, to the lighting changes.

For a closer look at the findings, download the full report.

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