Posted in education, electronic imaging and displays, Illumination, museum, Optics

LEDs for those unsightly power stations

This news courtesy of a Nexxus Lighting press release:

Advanced Lighting Systems (a business unit of Nexxus Lighting) has completed a lighting project for the Georgia “Power Wrap.”

The “Power Wrap,” is an art installation created for The Georgia Institute of Technology, by Amy Landesberg Architects with students from the Power Wrap Workshop, College of Architecture and the Georgia Institute of Technology. It was a recipient of an American Institute of Architects Merit Award and earlier this month received an Award of Excellence from the Atlanta Urban Design Commission. The project goal was to screen the unsightly substation equipment that spread over several acres.  It consists of a 500-foot-long screen made up of 75, 20-foot-high panels; each panel has 3 sections of differently rotated vertical steel louvers, so that visibility varies depending on orientation. In daylight there is a visually rich pattern of light and shadow and at night, a surprising display of color and movement provided by programmed LED light fixtures.

“The project used 36 color changing LED LiveLED100’s for the light sources and the system was controlled using the Sunlight DMX controller and software package by Nicolaudie. The result is a lighting system that creates pulses of color to provide a beautifully choreographed light show that is both animated and entertaining” stated Paul Benton, Regional Sales Manager for Advanced Lighting Systems.

My first thought on reading this was “why a screen? Couldn’t you just accent the power station with little LEDs? I’m sure all the electricity buzzing through there could light them simply by osmosis.” And honestlyI don’t think the daytime version of this art installation is that great (see images here). But apparently people are happy with it – it won several awards both according to the press release and the college’s website – so maybe the photos don’t do it justice.


Beth Kelley is an applied & digital anthropologist with an overall interest in how people engage with and are impacted by their environments and vice versa. This has manifested itself in many ways, by looking at creativity, playful spaces, built environments, and environmental enrichment, sustainability, design research, and integrative and collaborative models of learning such as through play and hands-on learning.