Typically, high-bay lighting is used to light surfaces more than 15 feet away in high ceiling areas. The most common high-bay applications include industrial manufacturing, warehouses, gymnasiums and big box retailers. Common applications for high-bay lighting include assembly, storage, and shipping and receiving, material processing, cold storage and computer viewing.
The Importance of High Bay Lighting
High bay lighting in these applications is especially important for a number of reasons. Low or poor light levels or will contribute to a number of issues such as safety, uncomfortable working conditions and unacceptable levels of worker productivity. Typically, in the past these areas were lit using 400 watt metal halide fixtures which over time lost quite a bit of light output and the color of the light could be yellowish or even green. Additionally, metal halide lamps have several other drawbacks such as they take several minutes to warm up wasting energy and producing little or no light during that time, they don’t work with occupancy sensors and they contain larger amounts of mercury than many other types of lighting.
Over time the inefficiency and environmental issues of the metal halide bulbs paved the way for a more efficient lighting source the fluorescent T5. The fluorescent T5 had several advantages over the metal halide such as they were capable of instant on and off cycles, they worked fairly well with lighting controls and had lower mercury content and better color. But, they still contained mercury and energy efficiency could be improved.
Today technology has created a perfect new source for high bay lighting.
High Bay LED Lighting
Using LED lighting in a high-bay application has many benefits. LED lights typically last over 100,000 hours and since there are no bulbs to change they cut your lighting maintenance costs to virtually nothing and reduce injuries associated with changing a bulb.
LED’s high-bays are capable of providing the same amount of light using 50% to 75% less energy and they contain no mercury or other dangerous chemicals. One of the defining aspects of LED lighting is that they emit light in a specific direction. In contrast high bay metal halide and fluorescent T5 emit light in all directions and much of that light produced by the lamp is lost within the fixture, reabsorbed by the lamp or the light escapes in a direction that is not useful.
LED work great with lighting controls such as dimming, occupancy sensors as well as daylight harvesting adding additional savings.