Ellie Coombs is our Roving Reporter!

Our very own Ellie Coombs recently covered the Arc Show for Australian website illumni:

After last night’s festivities and some early morning meetings, the uncommonly warm and sunny day for March is definitely helping to revive me as I head back to the Arc Show. It’s now lunchtime and sadly I have just missed Joe Bokelman from ETC talking about Spectral Equalisation “The Extreme Fine Tuneability of Colour”.

Yesterday the IALD Enlighten Europe Conference focused on LEDs and, while the presentations were good, some people were left feeling frustrated that the panel could not answer their questions regarding future standards for LEDs, a debate set to continue.

Next up on the conference programme is London Games Lights. Whether you are working directly on an Olympic project or not, I don’t think there is anyone in the industry who doesn’t have the opening date emblazoned on their memory – it seems to be the UK’s deadline for completion of all projects, whatever the sector and however unrelated they may appear. So, with just 146 days to go (I passed the countdown clock on my way here) it was great to hear Julie Greer (of Greer Pritchard) and Mark Major (of Speirs + Major) together with chair Kay Hughes of the Olympic Delivery Authority, discuss how the Olympic project is being managed and delivered, and getting a sneaky peek of the masterplan!

The conference adjourns for lunch and I arrive at the Innovation Centre just in time to see the winners of the Arc Show Innovation Awards being announced. New to the show the awards are a celebration of the best in lighting product design. Highly commended goes to Pharos Controls and Vista Light.

Photonstar, who have been challenging visitors to “spot the difference” between a halogen lamp and their new ChromaWhite Tungsten+ LED module in a side-by-side demonstration, is rewarded by winning The Visitors Choice Award. Photonstar describe the module as ‘The first and only module to genuinely emulate all the desirable features of halogen sources. Matching or outperforming halogen in all parameters, ChromaWhite Tungsten+ is the first and only LED solution to provide a reliable, high colour quality, efficient source without the concerns over colour shift, without shortfalls in rendering certain colours including red (R9), as well as matching dimming characteristics.

Top spot goes to iGuzzini, with iQ winning “Most Innovative Product” as voted for by the panel of Judges. iQ has been developed to illuminate a column achieving uniform linear light without the usual scallop on the bottom part. The basic idea of iQ is to undo the usual centered source and dismantle the typical recessed up light round fixture into four parts of the curve. The visual effect is entirely different than using usual round recessed fittings. Not only in form of light emitted from it but also in volume of the body itself which is reduced to the actual size of the source.’

The IALD conference is brought to a close with the bd Magazine Panel, chaired by Amanda Baillieu with Dominic Meyrick of Hoare Lea, Graham Rollins of LDI, Mark Ridler of BDP and Jeff Shaw of Arup. This proves to be a lively discussion covering a range of topics including embracing new technologies in hotels and spas and creating the new retail experience. The panel is followed by bd’s networking and champagne reception, which provides an opportunity to discuss and look back over the last two days.

So was Arc 2012 a success? I think the general opinion is yes!

For the lighting industry it’s a great opportunity to network and catch up. Instead of the usual conveyor belt of snatched conversations associated with this type of event, where you only manage to cover the pleasantries: ‘How are you? How’s business? We must meet up properly soon’ before the other person is swept out of sight, the Arc Show offers a more intimate environment where you can actually find time to have proper conversations, discussions and meetings.

The Arc Show isn’t just for the lighting industry. With its central location and accessible scale and presentation it attracts many related professions, and with firms such as Foster + Partners at this year’s event it continues to provide a platform for leading architects, designers and engineers to gain knowledge and explore the newest products and developments in lighting. Light + Building may be the big exhibition this year but the multidisciplinary approach of the Arc Show is unique and ensures its continued success.