The City of Durham’s South Durham Water Reclamation Facility now has improved nighttime visibility and significantly reduced energy consumption, thanks to the recent installation of Cree® LED luminaires around several exterior areas of the facility. Implementing an LED lighting solution was especially important for the facility as the site runs 24/7 to process as much as 20 million gallons of potable water per day for area residents. Maintenance on the facility’s systems often occurs at night, and the aging lighting system needed updating.
The decision to implement an LED technology solution was not easily reached. The facility staff needed to be educated on the benefits of Cree LED technology. After learning about the color clarity, light uniformity, targeted illumination and energy savings that luminaires could provide, management was convinced that the switch would be beneficial. Projections included uniformity of light levels, increased color quality, and targeted illumination providing significantly improved nighttime visibility and reduced light pollution (light spill into areas where it was not needed).
The 20-year-old high-pressure sodium (HPS) site lighting was upgraded with Cree Edge® area luminaires using 40-degree flood optics, reducing energy consumption by approximately 64 percent. The previous HPS lighting on 18 poles in the processing area and at the front gate cast a yellowish hue, creating a challenge for the staff to work at night. After the new LED lighting installation, employees remarked on the higher quality of illumination, and they feel their productivity increased as a result of the improved visual performance.
To control project cost, the facility utilized the existing poles in the lighting design, keeping in mind the desire to eliminate dark zones. With limited flexibility for pole placement, directing illumination where it was most needed was achieved with Cree NanoOptic® Technology and the facility selected the best optics for their application. The visual effect of the new lighting in the walkways and maintenance access areas creates a perception of increased light levels, due to the shifts in color and intensity.