Students shine at Light Middle East competition

The winners of the GE Lighting Best in Class – Student Light Design competition were announced at Light Middle East 2011.

Soheil Ansari and Sara Yousef Kamel, students from the interior design and architecture department at American University of Dubai (AUD) won in the Façade Lighting and Energy Saving Lighting Product categories, respectively.

“I want to foster local talent and it’s best to start doing that at the university level,” said Tamer Al Shaer, regional channel manager, GE Lighting.

“The key parameters in this competition were energy savings and sustainability while not compromising on aesthetics,” he added.

He said the entries were innovative, considering lighting as a subject, is not something which is taught or been made aware of on a large scale.

“The project which won the outdoor façade lighting is based on a metro station and since it had a local flavour, the audience could relate to what the students were talking about,” added Al Shaer.

The students also had to attend a technical workshop by GE Lighting to explain what each of its products are best suited for. “It created a marriage between the students’ creativity and technical products,” said Dr. Linda Nubani, assistant professor at AUD and managing director of Mazarii Interiors.

The competition was organised by Messe Frankfurt, Mazarii Interiors and AUD, and supported by the Professional Lighting Design Association (PLDA) with GE as the main sponsor.

From the 12 concepts submitted, Nubani selected two entries based on the maturity and originality of the concept.

Energy Saving Lighting Products

For this category, students had to use energy saving light in an indoor environment, which was aesthetically pleasing as well.

Kamel said her aim with participating in the competition was to create a light fixture that looks good and benefits its users. “For my Opus family of office lights, my main inspiration is a parking lamp post; I wanted to mimic the same effect of a warm diffused light indoors,” she said. She said the lights she used can save energy by 30%, and used two different LED Modules by GE.

The residential family of lights, named Cosmic, is abstract looking, which works as a decorative element and an accent task light. The top tube-like part can be adjusted and rotated 180 to provide multi-directional lighting.  The Cosmic family of lights includes a floor lamp, a bedside light and a chandelier.

Façade Lighting

Students had to create a new way of illuminating external windows in order to create a new façade of buildings.

Ansari said his project was aesthetic, functional in that it provided necessary information to Dubai Metro passengers, is easy to maintain and is eco-friendly. The chosen products would work for more than 50,000 hours and have a minimum of 5 years guarantee.

“Passengers can look at the outside of the station and judge where the train is. It shows when the metro is coming, when it is going and when is the last train,” said Ansari.

There are two main components in the lighting design: the linear red light and the top yellow lights. The red light represents the train. The bottom center of the path represents the current station while the other two ends represent the two adjacent metro stations. So just by a glance, one could tell the position of the arriving trains to the station.

“The last figure in my image will only be used for the last train of each day. The different top lights would get dimmer and brighter to catch the attention of the passengers and to inform them about the last train,” he said.

The chosen product for the red linear light is GE Tetra Contour. It is flexible and can be easily bent to create the desired curve. It is also eco-friendly since it does not contain any lead, mercury or glass. It is energy efficient; it uses 40% less energy than neon lights. To light the rectangular glass openings on the golden surface, GE Tetra PowerGrid was used.

Both systems are capable of tolerating high temperatures; +75 degrees Celsius during the day (storage) and 55 degrees Celsius during the night (ambient operating). They also have more than 50,000 hours lifetime.

Ansari and Kamel have won a trip to the Light+Building Show in Frankfurt to be held from April 15-20, 2012, sponsored by Messe Frankfurt.

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