McGill University students develop LED luminaires with Future's help

Sept. 20, 2010
Future Electronics collaborated with McGill University students on four renewable-energy products including 2 LED-based SSL projects supported by Future Lighting Solutions.

At McGill University in Montreal, Canada, 41 engineering students participated in renewable-energy projects supported by Future Electronics. Two were LED-based solid-state lighting (SSL) luminaire-design projects including a street light and a light for an underground transit-center. The transit center light won a graduation prize for four students

"This partnership with Future Lighting Solutions and Future Energy Solutions gave our engineering students the opportunity to develop real-world applications, work alongside a team of experts, and see the various challenges involved," said James J. Clark, Associate Dean, Academic, Faculty of Engineering at McGill. "Participating students said it was an extraordinarily valuable experience to interact with Future’s engineers and executives."

Future supplied the components for the projects and offered training to the students in the SSL technology area. The company provided the engineering students with access to engineering software and support in areas such as optical and thermal simulations.

The predefined objective for the transit-center fixture as to develop an energy-efficient LED lighting solution that could be integrated into the Montreal underground transit system lighting infrastructure. The engineering students used 48 Luxeon Rebel LEDs from Philips Lumileds general-purpose white portfolio.

The resulting SSL luminaire outputs 4000 lm at an efficacy of 70 lm/W. The design is based on a semi-circular hinged package that features a convex semi-circular light panel that widely disperses the light. Moreover the hinged support arm allows installers to modify the angle of the light pattern so that it can be adapted into different station architectures.

The students also based the luminaire on modular interchangeable LED arrays. The design allows both easy replacement of LEDs and allows the installer to use fewer LEDs when less light is required in a specific application. The transit-center luminaire won the University's Harry Pearce Prize awarded annually by the Mechanical Engineering department.

LED street light for China

The objective for the street-light project was to develop a luminaire that met the requirements of street-light standards in China. Specifically the students were charged with developing a light for Type III residential roads that are relatively narrow and rely on lamps on only one side of the road.

The students utilized 63 Luxeon Rebel ES LEDs in the street-light luminaire. The design outputs 6860 lm at an efficacy of 72 lm/W. The fixture was designed with a concave light panel and each row of LEDs is angled to disperse the light as required. The design spreads the light at a maximum of 60º and utilizes fewer LEDs to illuminates the area directly underneath the fixture thereby offering even illumination across the wide beam pattern.

The projects proved positive for both Future and the students."This collaboration is part of our commitment to providing hands-on experience to the engineers of tomorrow," said Jamie Singerman, Worldwide Corporate VP, Future Lighting Solutions. "It also strengthens our relationship with McGill and connects us with talented students who may be following a career path in solid state lighting."

Indeed the collaboration led directly to one of the students joining the Future SSL engineering team. Michael Simla, now a junior engineer at Future, said," I appreciated the interaction with Future Lighting Solutions and felt that it was an incredibly valuable experience to be able to work in a multi-disciplinary team and to participate in this project. Future provided me with a fabulous opportunity to see a real-world application and the related obstacles. While I was doing the project, it became very clear that I love the LED lighting industry and knew that I wanted to be a part of the Future team and continue my career in the LED lighting world."