Related Articles

 

LED Lighting A Green Way To Improve Campus Safety - As college tuition continues to rise, so do the costs of...

 

Teaching and Technology: Regaining Key Control - A key part of providing a high-quality educational...

 

How to Compare Grow Lights - Comparing various horticulture lighting systems can be a...

 

A.L.I.C.E at Point Park University: Alert Lockdown, Inform, Counter, & Evacuate - A man calmly walks into the Academic Hall and enters the...

 

LED Lighting A Green Way To Improve Campus Safety - As college tuition continues to rise, so do the costs of...

 

Campus Safety Budgeting: Improving Efficiency and Measuring ROI - When budgets are tight, accountability is crucial. As...

 

The Technology of Lightning Warning Systems - Lightning warning technology has evolved over the last 23...

 

Video Surveillance Management and Centralization: How Campuses Achieve Cost Savings While Keeping Students and Property Safe - The industry-wide migration to IP video surveillance over...

 

A Unique Path to Enlightenment - As the U.S. Department of Energy's Better Buildings...

 

LED Lighting Delivers Value in Enhancing University Experience - Lighting plays a significant role in shaping university...

 

Iona College Becomes More Energy Efficient - Colleges and universities in the United States spend an...

 

Investing in LED Lighting: More than a Penny Earned - In an era of soaring education costs, investing in...

 

Choosing the Right Access Control Technology for Student Housing - One of the most important aspects of on-campus housing is...

 

7 Tips For Getting The Most Out of Your Analog Cameras With Video Encoders - Video encoders turn analog cameras into IP video - creating...

 

Security and Solar Window Films: Campus Safety and Other Benefits - As universities beef up security on their campuses because...

 

Upgrading Your Campus to Higher Security Credentials - Keeping a university safe and secure is one of the most...

 

ActiveLED Lighting--Big Savings in Higher-Ed Helps Maximize Funds for Teaching - Optimizing future budgets by saving money on operations...

 

Life Safety, Security, & Operational Conflicts - Our world is full of threats. Unfortunately, some of those...

 

Automating Attendance, Visitor and Asset Tracking in University Environments: Taking Attendance Like Never Before - Universities are constantly advancing technology and...

 

Protecting Student Belongings as Part of Campus Security Plan - Student security lives at or near the top of every...

 

Colleges and Universities as Prime Cyberattack Targets: Behind the Threat - When it comes to cyberattack targets, many think of...

 

The Role of Light in Education - It is not news that light has some kind of role to play in...

 

Communications for Campus Security - As another school year approaches, security departments are...

 

The Safety and Sustainability Factors of Filtered Fume Hoods, Ductless Fumed Hoods, and Ducted Fume Hoods - Fume hoods are a central component in most laboratories....

 

Teaching and Technology: Bi-Level Shoe Box Fixtures - Bryan College Installs Bi-Level Shoe Box Fixtures to...

 

PCI Compliance & Questions of Security - Colleges and Universities strive for PCI compliance, but...

 

Energy Saving and High Tech Lighting in Education Improve Research and Student Productivity - If you are competing with other research and education...

 

Situational Awareness: The Key to Smarter Campus Risk Management - My daughter Elizabeth starts college in a few weeks, so...

 

Video Insight Establishes $250,000 School Security Grant - A Pilot Program has been developed to help underfunded ...

 

Private Universities are Getting Smart About Student ID Technology - Whether a card or mobile phone, credentials are becoming...

 

Enhancing Campus Wide Radio Communications - The traditional school year comes to a close, but...

 

Promoting Campus Safety and Sustainability through Solar Lighting - The typical sustainable campus solutions like low-carbon...

 

Utilizing Daylight Brings More Than Just Energy Savings - Natural light has the ability to transform a space,...

 

Advanced IP Radio Systems for Campus Security - When it comes to campus security, radio systems play an...

 

Archives > February 2015 > Come Together, Right Now: Advanced Lighting for a Forward-Thinking Campus

Come Together, Right Now: Advanced Lighting for a Forward-Thinking Campus

Paul McCartney and John Lennon had other thoughts in mind when they wrote that now famous line almost five decades ago, but their words still resonate across today's technological landscape. Bringing together various technologies can create powerful synergy.

By: Paul Mitchell

Remember how clever it was when someone first integrated a VCR right into the TV itself instead of their being separate machines? I still recall how impressed I was the first time I saw a refrigerator that had an ice dispenser on the outside of the door.

Today, refrigerators can not only keep track of the food you have on hand but also find recipes online to match that inventory. To this day, few technological advancements have changed my home-life as much as the DVR technology now built into my cable box. The ability to binge-watch a whole season of "Breaking Bad"' in one weekend is beyond what even Michelangelo or Galileo would have dreamt, and being able to skip over the commercials is just a slice of heaven.

lighting

Nowhere is this technological synergy more apparent than with the smart phones that most of us carry around in our 
pockets and purses (or "satchels," according to my brother in law).

In addition to microprocessors that the Cold War Soviet Union would have killed for, these handheld devices commonly include proximity sensors, ambient light sensors, magnetometers, gyroscopic sensors, fingerprint scanners, voice recognition software, virtually scratch-proof ultra HD touch screens, miniaturized HD video cameras, and much more. Oh, and they can also make phone calls. The next generation of "wearable tech" that would have been equally at home on the wrist of George Jetson or James Bond is already here and fast becoming as commonplace as our phones.

Forward-thinking Campus Planners and Technological Synergy

Today, forward-thinking campus planners are harvesting these advancements in sensor miniaturization and combining them with recent advancements in solid state lighting and wireless control systems. Whereas a light pole in the past was just that-a means to simply support and energize a light fixture- today it is recognized as a far more valuable asset to the university.

That singular structure can include not only an energy efficient LED light fixture capable of adaptive light levels and wireless internet-based control, but also house a robust speaker, LED messaging system, and two-way communication with campus Security. That same pole can integrate seismic, atmospheric, gunshot, or water sensors. It can house a relatively small camera capable of recording daytime HD images and video, or utilizing infrared technology, allowing it to "see" and record in shadows and behind foliage where a normal camera canno

Using Blue Light Call Boxes for More Than Emergencies

Most campuses utilize blue light style emergency call boxes. Dotting the campus landscape,these units are most commonly standalone. Not only can two-way emergencyolder style communication beintegrated into the light pole, but it can be done on a higher level, providing a far more robust deterrent to a potential predator.

Consider the scenario where a person walking at night feels threatened or believes he or she is being followed. On an average campus, the student would locate the nearest emergency call box, then press the button and wait for a response from campus Security (hopefully an immediate response).

Now consider a scenario where that person presses the blue light button and the LED light on that pole-and on poles within a predetermined zone-immediately increases by 25-50%, brightening the entire area. 

Simultaneously, the HD camera on the pole, and others within that zone an, immediately start recording. At the same time, an authoritative voice from the pole loudly 

announces that the area is now being recorded and that Security has been notified,as the blue light on top of the light pole turns to red so that the specific call box location can be identified from a distance.

All of this happens before someone in the campus Security office has even had a moment to react and answer the incoming call.

Using Integrated Speakers for Mass Messaging and Wayfinding

In addition to being part of a more robust system to deter an assault, the integrated speaker also allows for mass messaging and wayfinding assistance. According to Mark Taussig, the university landscape architect for Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas, one of the shortcomings of traditional emergency call boxes is that they're rarely used. Taussig explains, "The emergency phone idea needs to transition away from the 9-1-1 feel into a more information-based system for general assistance. It's unfortunate that students often have the impression that 

integrated lightingthey'll get in trouble for using the system if they're not in danger. They could use the call box to ask for directions or for help if they're lost, but that generally doesn't happen."

Part of the problem may lie in the fact that many of these call boxes have the word Emergency on them, giving the impression that emergencies are the only occasion for which they're allowed to be used. By integrating a speaker and two-way communication into the light pole in a more aesthetic manner, that stigma goes away, and the two-way communication becomes far more useful.

The light pole can still have a blue LED element shining all night, noting the presence of the emergency call capability, but will be greatly enhanced by the camera and powerful speaker. These speakers also allow Security to alert students and faculty to any threats, weather-related or otherwise, and can even be used to play the fight song across campus on game days.

The integration of a multi-colored LED element, separate from the main light fixture, brings a number of new abilities, only one of which is the Blue Light style notification that the pole includes an emergency call system. By combining the integrated speaker with multi-colored LED lights, the administration or Security now has the means to effectively direct people to overflow parking, to an event venue, or where to go in the event of an emergency or traffic mishap.

The combination of speakers with "chasing" lights provides an effective means for mass messaging, particularly during sporting events, which often bring a flood of both pedestrian and vehicular traffic to the campus. To handle those conditions, a higher level of mass communication and wayfi nding are necessary to maintain a safe environment, as well as to quickly resolve emergencies and/or mishaps that inevitably occur.

For nighttime events, standard light levels can be easily increased by Security in order to maximize pedestrian and driver safety, after which the lighting would return to preprogrammed illumination levels.

Using Environmental Sensors to Detect
I
ncreased Threat Levels

It is also an unfortunate reality that these events, because of the large number of spectators and a wide television audience, can also brign an increased threat level from those who might plan an unfortunate act in order to bring attention to their cause or greivance. 

This level of integrated lighting/security/ messaging system can provide Security with real-time imaging and the ability to quickly and effectively communicate in order to maintain a safe environment. Environmental sensors which can detect explosives or other pollutants in the air can be combined with gunshot sensors. This additional layer of security may be relevant not only near stadiums and theaters, but around facilities involved with sensitive research related to defense or the Department of Homeland Security.

Bundling Form and Function in One Interactive Asset

The ability to bundle the form and function of these various elements into one interactive asset is already here. Tomorrow's campus environments are being designed today. The above examples are only part of the menu of options that technology has brought to the table.

Utilizing what was once just a light pole as a means to both gather and disseminate information across the campus has changed the way facility staff now approach the various issues of lighting, security, messaging, and emergency management.

 

 

About The Author
Paul Mitchell

heads up National Sales & Education for Sternberg Lighting and is the Regional Sales Vice President of Western North America. A graduate of Michigan State University, he serves on the IES Roadway Lighting Committee and on the Planning Committee for the IES Street and Area Lighting Conference. For more information on Sternberg Lighting and Intellistreets, please visit our website at www.sternberglighting.com/intellistreets.

 

 

PUPN Magazine is a trademark of Flaherty Media, LLC, copyright 2017. PUPN Magazine and all contents are properties of Flaherty Media, LLC.