Design and Development of a Fiber-Optic Hybrid Day-Lighting System

[+] Author and Article Information
Sean Lawless

Steven Winter Associates, Inc., 61 Washington Street, Norwalk, CT 06854

Ravi Gorthala

Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering, University of New Haven, West Haven, CT 06516

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4039024 History: Received June 13, 2017; Revised January 07, 2018


This paper discusses a Fiber-Optic Hybrid Day-Lighting system that can cut energy consumed by buildings and shelters for lighting significantly. The focus of the study is on mobile application. The system is comprised of two primary components: the solar collector and the Solar Hybrid Lighting Fixture. The solar collector, consists of a housing, structural stand, a dual axis tracking system, Fresnel Lenses, secondary optics, and fiber-optic cables. The collector is integrated into a dual-axis tracker, which is then mounted on a tripod. The collector with an aluminum housing holds eight 10-inch diameter Fresnel Lenses that focus sunlight onto eight secondary optics based on total internal reflection which filter UV/IR and deliver uniform light to the fiber-optic cables. The solar collector tracks the sun's movement through the day with a dual-axis tracker, ensuring the light is concentrated into the fiber-optic cables. The optics has been designed to have a high half-acceptance of 1.75o and can accommodate a tracking accuracy of 1.50o or better. The Hybrid Light Fixture (SHLF) consists of two components: a solar fiber-optic system and an LED system. The fiber-optic cable is coupled to an acrylic light diffusing rod that delivers the light into the room. During sunny periods, solar fiber-optic lighting could provide full illumination level. In order to keep the same level of lighting during cloudy periods, the LED portion of the light fixture will supplement the output of the SHLF.

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