Exhibitors and attendees that enLIGHTenment Magazine spoke to were unanimous in their opinion of the 2014 edition of Lightfair International, held this week at the Las Vegas Convention Center, Las Vegas.
From ground-breaking examples of OLEDs to the wide variety of wireless and integrated control systems for commercial and residential applications, the consensus on the show floor is that this year’s Lightfair exhibition was a resounding success.
The Conference portion of the show especially resonated with the specifiers and lighting designers in attendance. For the first time, Lightfair included forums on Healthcare and Hospitality to coincide with the industry’s growing business in these two areas. In particular, there were noticeably more exhibitors focused on healthcare-related lighting applications than ever before.
In addition to innovative product developments, the 2014 edition of Lightfair also marked the debut of many new companies who have either entered the North American market after success in Europe/Asia plus brand new start-up companies with unique applications. Attendees pointed out the growing presence of the large electronics corporations that have long utilized LED technology entering the lighting business. While Sharp and Toshiba entered the U.S. lighting market several years ago, the larger booth presentations of LG and Samsung made it clear that they intend to become major players in the market.
After three years in development, Tech Lighting created a stir with a new product line called GATICA™ (General And Task Illumination, Controls, Adjustability), a highly flexible and modular ultra-thin profile LED lighting system that combines aimable general illumination, wall wash, and aimable spot lighting. Integral occupancy and daylighting sensors can also be configured into the system. According to Tech Lighting President Josh Weiss, “Specifiers will love GATICA because its modularity and flexibility present limitless lighting possibilities – and it achieves the aesthetic and functional needs for a space while meeting energy-efficiency and budgetary objectives. Contractors will love it because it’s easily installed and building code-compliant—plus they can always build a highly customizable GATICA system with parts in stock. And, end-users will value that GATICA delivers durability, aesthetics, and performance over time and can easily be adjusted if a space changes.”
One of the trends that was well-received on the trade show floor was the ability to change the color temperature of an LED light source at the turn of a switch. In addition, advancements in dimming technology that allow LEDs to dim “warmly,” closely mimicking the appearance of an incandescent being dimmed was a resounding success.
The location of Lightfair 2015 – which has been widely discussed over the past few years – seems to have finally satisfied nearly all of the exhibitors. The show returns to New York City for the first time since 2009 and will be held at the newly renovated Jacob K. Javits Convention Center May 3-7, 2015. Last year’s successful staging in Philadelphia led to lively debate among attendees and exhibitors over which East Coast venue is the most effective. The final decision was the result of the unanimous vote of Lightfair’s partners – the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) and the International Association of Lighting Designers (IALD) – and followed extensive independent customer research to determine the preferred East Coast venue.
The exhibitors and attendees that enLIGHTenment Magazine spoke to on the show floor were enthusiastic about Lightfair’s return to California in 2016, debuting at the San Diego Convention Center. The show had been held in San Francisco during the 1990s.