Fluorescent to LEDs in Record Time

In a nocturnal installation all the pieces had to fit together.

Finland’s second largest shopping center Sello is located in Espoo, just outside of Helsinki. One of its two hypermarkets, K-citymarket, has always impressed its customers with its size and product assortment. However, this was not enough for the owner who decided to carry out an extensive remodeling and restructuring of the store. At the last minute he decided to include in the project the exchange of all general lighting, and that’s when Ensto’s new LED solution had a chance to show its benefits.

Brightly exceeded expectations

Last summer Ensto Lighting’s Project Sales Manager Aki Saine called his long-standing customer, Kesko Food’s Building Technology Manager Jari Suuronen, into Ensto’s factory showroom. The reason was an updated version of the Tino G2 LED luminaire with an improved luminous efficacy of up to 40%.

This leap exceeded the bar and an LED luminaire became for the first time a realistic alternative to fluorescent lamps also in locations where large volumes of T5 luminaires are replaced with new ones.

The renewed product found its first proof by fire in K-citymarket Sello, where electrical installations were already at full speed.  Delivery schedule was not the only challenge; the locations of most luminaires had to be changed, the current EnstoNet installation system had to be kept in place, and DALI control system had to be combined with the entire general lighting.

Ready, plug, go

Ensto quickly began with planning and preparations and in just over a week after the first presentation the customer was able to assess the luminaires in model installation on site.

“We had a good starting point as Tino G2 LED luminaire is designed to accommodate the needs of different locations. The only customization was done to the mounting mechanism, where steplessly adjustable brackets where added to the lighting unit ends. This enabled them to reach the existing suspension structures and they could be positioned freely,” Saine says.

The requirement for rapid installation suited Ensto in other ways as well. The location was already equipped with an EnstoNet installation system, exactly for this purpose. It was fitted with a group of wiring harnesses and splitters required for the DALI control system, and the luminaires were equipped with corresponding plug-in couplers.

The decision about lighting replacement was made in the advent of summer holidays, and the luminaire production was reorganized urgently to meet the demands of the order. Saine cleared with the renovation site all the necessary details such as rail spacing, line lengths and connector types.

Fully assembled luminaires were delivered to the site in the agreed installments over a period of two weeks. The luminaires had been packaged and labeled in such a way that installation – conducted mostly at night time – would be as smooth as possible. The luminaire replacement project was facilitated by Ensto’s experience as a supplier of logistically and schedule-wise demanding projects.

“During the last fifteen years we have renewed a large amount of lighting in our shops together with Ensto,” Jari Suuronen says. “Here, too, their strengths have proven to be a good understanding of our needs and the dimensions of the project, as well as the quality of their products. I am very satisfied with the level of LED know-how and the flexibility they have demonstrated in this exceptional project.”

A thousand lux or just the right amount of light?

As we enter the shopping center, lighting certainly is the first thing we notice about the K-citymarket’s new look. The sensation of bright day light makes the space appealing. As we stroll through the various departments we find many renewed details creating a more attractive space and a better purchase experience.

The light is directed more to the shop corridors as the suspension is switched from uniform tile-pattern to directional lighting rows following the corridors. At the same time energy is saved as the upper surfaces of the shelves are no longer illuminated at full capacity.

Suuronen notes that a typical store has a traditional fluorescent lighting without control system. It produces a steady state of 800 or 1000 lux, resulting in unnecessary if not even harmfully excessive illumination. This way it is not possible to meet today’s energy efficiency requirements.

In this store the level of light intensity can be adjusted by department. Lighting brings attractively forth fruits and wellness products, while in the cold and frozen food department the cabinets’ own lighting plays a more significant role.

During cleaning and shelving the lighting level is lowered to one third and at night time the lighting is switched to minimum or off entirely. Without programmed control this would require completely separate lighting solutions.

“I am pleased that we found this LED luminaire: its high luminous efficacy and gross energy efficiency were positive surprises. With this upgrade we were, in conjunction with other modifications, able to secure an impressive and long-term lighting solution for this central metropolitan commercial hub.”

Author: Kari Heikkilä