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Innovative long range daylighting system

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - ECHYNOXE SILICA (Innovative long range daylighting system)

Período documentado: 2015-06-01 hasta 2015-11-30

Daylighting reduces the need for electric light by introducing natural light into a building and improves indoor environmental quality. Numerous daylight transport systems have been developed to improve natural illumination in the deep core of buildings. However, there is no available solutions that can bring daylight into buildings deeper than 30m, and thus are not suitable for deep-plan and high-rise buildings.

The ECHYNOXE SILICA project consists on the development of a new concept of daylighting using sun tracker and highly light-transmitting fibre optics coupled with Fresnel lenses. With the ECHYNOXE SILICA technology, daylight can be transmitted on distances of more than 100m. This disruptive innovation has the potential to widen the market of daylighting systems to all types of buildings.

The project is leaded by an innovative French SME, ECHY which develops daylighting devices based on fibre optics technology for natural lighting, to improve the quality of diffused light and to reduce electricity consumption. The strategy of the company is the improvement of the technology via R&D efforts while commercializing and making the first references of the technology.

This feasibility study was composed of two parts:
In a first time, ECHY’s staff have performed a technical economic study to design the most efficient system in terms of light transmission by minimizing the manufacturing costs. Then a scale one prototype has been produced and installed in a deep-plan building. This deep-plan building is based in France, near Paris. Daylight is over distances of more than 150m. The output luminous flux is more than 500 lumens per fiber for 100m distance. In addition, the integrity of sunlight spectrum is conserved. The reduction of energy consumption for lighting is 30 kWh/m²/year.

In a second time, a business plan has been elaborated. As the technical results of the ECHYNOXE SILICA project are very encouraging, the business plan has highlighted the strategy to be implemented by ECHY for the commercialization of the ECHYNOXE SILICA product. It requires a network of distributors and fitters all over the world. This strategy will be presented in a SME Instrument Phase 2 project.

The ECHY project answers to current directions towards greener buildings implying sustainable design and healthy environments for people as it reduces energy consumption of building and transmitted natural light improves wellbeing of exposed people.
The feasibility study starts with an economic and technical study on the fibres optics. The fibres optics have to be easily adaptable to the ECHYNOXE concentration modules already developed by ECHY.

Then, a scale prototype has been produced and its performance evaluated. Fibres were up to 160m-long.
The luminous flux at 100m was more than 500lm and the integrity of sunlight spectrum was conserved.
Fibres optics were installed on a hybrid luminaire, with electric LED lighting that takes over when sunlight is not enough.

As the technical feasibility study was succesful, a business plan has been made. The market launch of the ECHYNOXE SILICA new product could be planned by the end of 2017. In 2020, ECHY would have hired more than 20 peoples for worldwide development.
The scale one prototype is made of the longest fiber optic ever installed for natural lighting, in the world. This longest fiber transmits sunlight with no alteration as it conserves the integrity of sunlight spectrum.

With distances more than 100m, the ECHYNOXE SILICA project has the potential to light with sunlight all types of building. Energy savings by replacing standard lighting systems by hybrid lighting systems are up to 30kWh/m²/year. Being able for installations into all kind of buildings, potential energy savings are huge.

In addition, sunlight has benefic impacts on exposed people. It increases their weelbeing and comfort.