Acuity launches web-based lighting life-cycle analysis tool

July 6, 2012
Acuity has introduced the Visual Economic Tool that allows lighting designers and specifiers to easily compare the life-cycle costs of up to three lighting systems.

Acuity Brands is offering a new tool on its website that enables quick calculation of the life-cycle costs of different lighting systems. Part of Acuity's Visual lighting design tool suite, the Visual Economic Tool is free to use and allows lighting designers and specifiers to compare the true cost of three different lighting systems.

Report from the Visual Economic Tool

Acuity says that its tool goes far beyond the simple payback calculators available from a number of industry players, providing a comprehensive economic analysis of different systems. You can easily use the tool to compare systems based on different light sources such as fluorescent, LED, and metal halide.

The tool can provide a strict lighting energy analysis or dig much deeper. "You can choose to perform energy-only estimates or input additional information to create estimates that include maintenance, lighting controls and HVAC data," said Randall King, director of illuminating engineering services for Acuity Brands Lighting. "The resulting calculated costs can include economic return as well as life-cycle costs, net present value, and internal rate of return. These second-level analysis methods provide an owner with a better business assessment than the typical payback methods currently employed because they account for the time value of money and total cost of ownership."

The new analysis tool makes calculations in accordance with the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IESNA) RP-31-1996 standard entitled "Recommended practice for the economic analysis of lighting." You can easily choose Acuity products for analysis, and even input data for competitors' products if you wish.

Results include comprehensive reports that users can download and save in PDF format. King added, "This is a breakthrough tool that provides users with more data, deeper evaluations and more choices." Acuity also has a video demonstrating the use of the tool (see links).