Luminaires from Zumtobel Group companies Zumtobel Lighting, Thorn Lighting and acdc have been chosen for the new science, technology engineering and mathematics (STEM) teaching building at Loughborough University. Thorn worked to a tight brief that included energy efficiency, aesthetics and a performance specification detailing illuminance levels required in each area together with a guide as to fitting type to be considered. The solution included a diverse range of Thorn’s luminaires and has resulted in a stylish installation with maximum performance, low maintenance and high energy savings.

The 55,000 sq ft STEMLab enables the University to enhance teaching space and laboratories and contains new engineering, physics, chemistry and bio laboratories for students. STEMLab represents a £17 million investment in new state-of-the-art facilities and the opportunity to offer students modern infrastructure, and new facilities not previously available to students – for example, a ‘drop-in’ engineering workshop for individual projects and associated modern engineering design tools such that our students can ‘Design, Engineer, Build and Test’. Alongside the facilities offered for practical work, the dedicated STEM Ideas Factory space, will work with primary and secondary school pupils and be a critical element of the new building.

2 x 66m continuous runs of Zumtobel’s Slotlight Infinity Slim have been used in the main Atrium to create a continuous flow of light with no shadows that complements the unique design of the space. Slotlight Infinity Slim has provided a truly integrated, low energy solution for the project with excellent colour rendering of Ra>80, lighting efficiency of up to 92 lm/W and a service life of 50,000 hours. For the reception area, Zumtobel Caela pendants, featuring edge-lit LED technology, have been chosen for their flexibility and aesthetic qualities to illuminate the main entrance. The precisely processed diffuser material of Caela enables exact dispersion of the light emitted and the luminaires can also turn 355° and tilt 45° so several luminaires can form a curve, a wave or architectural feature as desired.

Omega Pro and Elevation LED luminaires were chosen for the offices and class rooms. With its slim 12mm profile, Thorn’s Omega PRO fitting incorporates a UV-stabilised opal acrylic diffuser to retain its clean look.The IP44 rated Omega provides excellent glare control (UGR<19/22) and is easily retrofitted, whilst maintenance is significantly reduced by the 50,000 hours’ life of the 4000K LED lamps supplied with the fitting. An elegant direct / indirect recessed luminaire, the Elevation LED range from Thorn boasts enhanced eco-performance with great lighting quality and low luminance for a comfortable working environment. Duoproof sealed, IP65 rated, recessed fluorescent LED luminaires have been installed in the laboratories.

For the exterior of the facility, Thorn’s Avenue D2 LED LED post top lantern with a state-of-the-art LED engine and prismatic enclosure are providing a unique and comfortable light with no glare or upward light. Elegant and vandal resistant Adelie Bollards have also been used outside, along with acdc’s Eclipse micro recessed, IP67 rated LED luminaire. Lastly, Thorn’s Olsys LED floodlight has been used to create decorative lighting effects on the building’s façade.

Zumtobel’s LITECOM lighting management system is being used to optimise the lighting solution with regard to visual comfort and energy efficiency. From control of individual rooms up to several floors or whole buildings: the functions and dimensions of the LITECOM system can be configured to suit the user. It can be controlled via conventional switches and Zumtobel control units, smartphones, tablets or other computers. This includes, among other things, dimming luminaires, saving lighting scenes, and controlling screens, windows and blinds. Other functions, such as daylight-based lighting management, are covered by optional apps, allowing for future changes and additions. If glare protection is also integrated into the LITECOM system via scene call or manual, independent adjustment of the blinds and slat positioning, visual comfort will be enhanced, as there will be no glare even when the sun is low.

The resulting, extremely efficient luminaires achieve maximum energy savings with energy consumption reduced by 25 per cent through the use of luminaires fitted with electronic control gear with a dimming function. Presence detectors and switch-on times that are stored in LITECOM's central building calendar can yield additional potential savings of 20 to 40 %. Even manual adjustment of lighting scenes to the respective activity will decrease electricity costs in many cases. Up to 75 % of the energy consumed by lighting can be saved in functional buildings by making optimum use of daylight.

Zumtobel, Thorn and acdc have provided cool, clean and modern illumination for the (STEM) teaching building at Loughborough University and achieved all of the requirements in the brief for maximum energy efficiency, excellent aesthetics and quality of light.