Lab Facilities and Equipment

The KU lighting program has a long history tracing back to 1980 when Dr. Ronald N. Helms, P.E., FIES started KU’s lighting program as Chair of the Architectural Engineering (ARCE) Department in the School of Architecture and Urban Design. It was very strong in the ‘80s and ‘90s with several full-time lighting professors including Dr. Ronald N. Helms, Dr. M. Clay Belcher, Dr. Martin Moeck, and Professor Lou Michel. Starting in 2010, KU’s lighting program has been reinvigorated and expanded. Today, the Lighting Research Lab has a lot of new facilities and equipment, as listed below, and a lighting research group led by Dr. Cai dedicated to lighting research and design.

 


The BOB FOLEY ILLUMINATION LAB

The Bob Foley Illumination Lab is located in 232 Art & Design Building (renamed as Chalmers building in 2015).  It has been used for lighting research and teaching at KU since 1986 (please see the historical announcement).

 


The DARK ROOM

The Dark Room is a 550 square-foot windowless high-bay space located in 1152 Learned Hall.  This space was remodeled in 2012 with all interior surfaces painted flat black (as shown in the pictures below taken in November 2012) for the benefit of lighting measurement and lab tests.  Today, the Dark Room accommodates an LED workshop, a Heliodon sunlight simulator for daylighting studies, a traffic signal light control cabinet, and a lot of other test equipment.

 


The NEW ILLUMINATION LAB

The new 715 square-foot Illumination Lab is a daylit space located in 2400 LEEP2 building. Floor-to-ceiling curtains divide this laboratory space into multiple sub-areas for lighting display, mock-up tests, controls and more. Two side-by-side identical sub-areas close to the windows facing south have suspended ceiling with adjustable height for testing different types of lighting systems for comparison. The daylit space is used for daylighting studies and mock-up tests for integration of daylighting and electric lighting where students can take measurements and set up control schemes. In the deep space, a grid of power tracks on the ceiling can be raised and lowered to mount lighting fixtures and control devices. The multi-purpose arrangement enables both research and teaching in this lab that accommodates four graduate research assistants and 14 more seats for class teaching.

 


KU DAYLIGHT MEASUREMENT STATION, TO BE BUILT

Dr. Cai and his group are conducting research on camera-aided daylight measurement. We plan to build an unmanned daylight measurement station on the roof of Learned Hall. This station is approximately 6 feet by 6 feet, and rests on a platform 5 feet above the roof. It will consist of a variety of climate-protected research-grade cameras in an array and meters (e.g., pyranometer, pyrheliometer) for daylight and solar energy measurement, which will be wired to a computer station to be mounted in the Dark Room (1152 Learned Hall) for data collection and treatment. This daylight measurement station will also be used for measurement of nighttime light pollution (sky glow). It will run 24/7 continuously for ideally 30 or more years.

Currently, there are 37 solar radiation measurement stations across the U.S. but none in Kansas. There are a total of 44 international daylight measurement program (IDMP) ground stations throughout the world, with two in the U.S. (Albany, NY and Ann Arbor, MI). Unfortunately, 25 years later, most IDMP stations no longer work. This new KU Daylight Measurement Station will supply the shortage of a solar radiation measurement station in Kansas and a daylight measurement station in the middle of the U.S. It will also be the first ground station for monitoring light at night (LAN) in the U.S. The measured datasets would be used in a wide variety of applications for energy saving, transportation, agriculture, health and well-being of human being and nocturnal animals, and environmental sustainability.

The camera-aided measurement instrument
A total of 37 measurement sites of solar radiation and two IDMP ground stations in the U.S.

 


HELIODON SUNLIGHT SIMULATOR, 3RD GENERATION

A third generation of Heliodon sunlight simulator was designed and developed by Dr. Hongyi Cai and custom made by the Quanzhou HuaTian Measurement Equipment LLC in China in 2014. This Heliodon Sunlight Simulator has capability of 3D angular movements of the scale model of buildings around a single fixed point (e.g., the center of the scale model) at a precision of 0.1°.  A prototype was installed in the dark room (1152 Learned Hall) as new equipment of the lighting research laboratory for daylighting simulation studies and class teaching.

 


CAMERA-ARRAY-BASED SKY MEASUREMENT TRIPOD HEAD

A new Sky Measurement Tripod Head was designed and developed by Dr. Hongyi Cai and custom made by the Quanzhou HuaTian Measurement Equipment LLC in China in 2013.  The Sky Measurement Tripod Head is used for mounting multiple (2-4) cameras in an array on horizontal plane, as new instrument in daylighting research and practice for camera-array-based luminance mapping of the celestial hemisphere (both the sun and the sky).

 


3D ANGULAR MEASUREMENT TRIPOD HEAD FOR HDR PHOTOGRAMMETRY

A new Three-Dimensional (3D) Angular Measurement Tripod Head was designed and developed by Dr. Hongyi Cai and custom made by the Quanzhou HuaTian Measurement Equipment LLC in China in 2013.  The 3D Angular Measurement Tripod Head is used for measurement of a camera’s 3D angular movement (yaw, pitch, roll) around its optical center with a precision of 0.1°, as new instrument for high dynamic range (HDR) photography and photogrammetry.

 


ADJUSTABLE CHIN REST, SECOND GENERATION

A second generation of Adjustable Chin Rest was designed and developed by Dr. Hongyi Cai and custom made by the Quanzhou HuaTian Measurement Equipment LLC in China in 2013. This new Adjustable Chin Rest was designed to replace conventional vertical chinrests to prevent forward head and neck that leads to neck shoulder and upper back pain, as new instrument for studies in human factor and ergonomics.

 


INTEGRATING SPHERE MEASUREMENT SYSTEM

A new 50 cm integrating sphere measurement system from Labsphere – the illumia PLUS 600-050 -2Pi + integral, with a spectrometer CDS600 and all other accessories. The integrating sphere measurement system is installed in the dark room (1152 Learned Hall) as new equipment of the lighting research laboratory for photometric measurements of LEDs and other small light sources.

 


A PORTABLE CALORIMETER CHAMBER

Dr. Cai and Dr. Xianglin Li and their groups are working together on innovative technologies to improve LED lighting and heating performance. We designed and custom-built a portable calorimeter chamber in house for accurate heat transfer measurement of new LED luminaires in a well-controlled environment. The calorimeter chamber is approximately 2.6 ft wide, 6.5 ft long, and 6 ft high, divided into a ceiling space and a room space. The entire calorimeter is constructed from 4” of foam rubber insulation sandwiched between hardboard. The inside surface of the calorimeter is lined with aluminum foil. The U values for the calorimeter walls are maintained to be 0.32 W/(m2 K) or less.  The tested LED luminaire will be mounted in the calorimeter chamber like their real installation.  The portable calorimeter can be used in any desired ambient environments, such as in the Warm Room in the M2SEC building in the School of Engineering at KU, where the temperature (20° to 55°C) and relative humidity (20% to 90%) can be controlled precisely (the control accuracies of temperature and relative humidity are +/- 2°C and +/-5%, respectively).

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The calorimeter chamber

 


TRAFFIC SIGNAL CONTROLLER CABINET

Dr. Cai is working with Dr. Steve Schrock and Dr. Eric Fitzsimmons on a new type of self de-icing LED signals. A traffic signal controller cabinet is stored in the dark room (1152 Learned Hall) of the lighting research laboratory for real-time simulation tests of LED signal lights.

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CAMERAS AND LENSES

Items
Qty
Canon EOS 550D (Rebel T2i) - body only
2
Sigma 4.5mm F2.8 EX DC HSM Circular Fisheye lens
2
Sigma 10mm F2.8 EX DC HSM Fisheye lens
2
Sigma 10-20mm F4-5.6 EX DC HSM lens
2
Sigma 30mm F1.4 EX DC HSM lens
2

 

 


HDR PHOTOGRAPHY AND PHOTOGRAMMETRIC ACCESSORIES

Items
Qty
X-Rite Macbeth color checker classic
2
X-Rite ColorChecker 18% Gray Balance
10
X-Rite ColorChecker Digital SG
2
X-Rite ColorChecker Passport 
2
Leica DISTO™ D5 distance meter
2
CST/Berger Heavy-Duty Flat Head Tripod with rubber shoes
2
Three-way head of photogrammetric kit (custom)
2
Zeikos Full Size Tripod
4

 

 


LIGHT METERS

Items
Qty
Minolta Illuminance Meter T-10
2
Minolta Illuminance Meter T-10M
1
Minolta Luminance Meter LS-100
1
Minolta Chroma Meter CL-200A
1
Minolta Illuminance Spectrophotometer CL-500A
1

 

 


OTHER ENVIRONMENTAL METERS

Items
Qty
Fluke 117 Electricians True RMS Multimeter
1
Fluke Ti100 160 x 120 Resolution, -20°C to 250°C (-4°F to 482°F) Thermal Imager for General Use
1
FLUKE 561 Infrared Thermometer, Range -40 To 1022 F
1
FLUKE 971 Thermohygrometer + case
1
Amprobe SOLAR-100 Solar Power Meter
1
Extech 407768 Sound Level Meter w/PC Interface
1
Kestrel 4500/4500 NV Weather Meter
1
Kestrel 4200 Pocket Air Flow Tracker
1

 

 


DATA LOGGER AND SENSORS

Items
Qty
Onset HOBO U30 System w/ Ethernet Communications 
1
Onset HOBO U30 Wi-Fi Datan Logger 
1
Onset HOBO 4-Channel External Datan Logger 
3
12-Bit Temp Smart Sensor (6m cable)
31
Temperature RH Smart Sensor
2
Silicon Pyranometer (Solar Radiation) Sensor
6
Air Velocity Sensor w/ 0.15 to 10 m/s Range
1
Photosynthetic Light (PAR) Smart Sensor with 3m cable
2
Telaire 7001 CO2 Sensor
1
C02 and Temp output cable for H22-001 or U30
1
Smart Sensor Extension Cable - 5m length
10
Replacement 10 Ahr battery for U30
2
6.0 Watt Solar Panel 
1
Light Sensor Bracket
1
Light Sensor Level
1
1-to-2 sensor communication adapter
2
U30 Sensor Input Expander
2
HOBO® U30 Shuttle
1
HOBO Weather Station 3-Meter Tripod Kit - M-TPA-KIT
1
NDVI Light Sensor Bracket
1
Smart Sensor Consolidator Box - S-ADAPT-6
1
HOBOware Pro Software Kit for Windows
1

 

 


A CHEST FREEZER

The chest freezer is located in the Dark Room (1152 Learned Hall) and used for testing the thermal performance of LED products for research & development, such as the prototypes of self de-icing LED signals in red, green, and yellow light shown in the pictures below, in simulated cold and humid harsh environment.

 


LAB COMPUTING EQUIPMENT AND FACILITIES

Items
Qty
Dell Latitude notebook - Lab/Field experiment use
3
Apple Macbook pro- Lab use
1
Dell desktop computers - for GRAs
2
Brother HL-2170W Laser Printer
1
EPSON Perfection Flatbed Scanner
1
EPSON PowerLite Portable Projector
1

 

 


AC/DC POWER SUPPLIES

Items
Qty
APC BACK-UPS 1500VA/865W UPS System
1
Mastech Single-Output DC Power Supply HY3003D 30V 3A
2
Extech 380820 Universal AC Power Source and AC Power Analyzer
1
BK Precision 1686A 12A 3-14VDC Power Supply
1
BK Precision 1621A 0 to 18V 0 to 5A Digital Display Power Supply
1
BK Precision 9130 Triple Output Programmable DC Power Supply
1
BK Precision 1502 Heavy Duty DC Battery Eliminator
1
BK Precision 1901 1-32V, 30A Switching DC Power Supply
1

 


LAB TOOLS AND SUPPLIES

Items
Qty
Soldering Station Features Continuously Variable Power Between 5-40W, a 1.5mm Pointed Tip
2
Amico Blue Sucking Vacuum Desoldering Pump Solder Sucker Remover Tool
2
SE MZ101B Helping Hands with Magnifying Glass
2
Elenco Electronics TL-16 Banana to Large Alligator Test Lead Set
30
Maxtech 16521MX 32-Piece Precision Bit Set
2
STANLEY Measuring Tape, 26 Ft/8M
2
KESON Measuring Tape, Open, 300 Ft
1
Miscellaneous hand tools
many