Research Project Information

Research Project Summary Information

Demonstration of a T5 HO System for High Bay Applications(ST8891-1)

Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute-LRC


Lighting indoor spaces with high ceilings, such as warehouses, factories, and large retail outlets is commonly accomplished with the use of High-Intensity Discharge (HID) light sources. Nevertheless, improvements in fluorescent lamps and luminaire designs has made fluorescent lighting a cost-effective solution in high-bay applications. T5 and T5 HO (high output) fluorescent lamps, when used with appropriate luminaires, have many advantages over HID systems, including dimming capability, better color rendering, longer life, better lumen maintenance, instant re-strike capability, and shorter warm up times than HID systems. T5 fluorescent systems can also be used more effectively with lighting control systems, such as occupancy sensors, to save additional energy. Because HID lighting systems require a relatively long warm-up and re-strike time (up to five minutes in most cases) they can be controlled easily, and typically must be left on at full light output during all hours of a facility's operation.

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Project Description

To design, demonstrate and evaluate an optimized T5 HO fluorescent lighting system with automatic controls in a high-bay application. The system will have high efficacy, greater system control flexibility, improved color rendition, longer life, and better lumen maintenance than comparable HID systems. The optimized T5 HO lighting system will also provide improved efficiency and reduced glare over currently available T5 and T8 fluorescent fixtures typically used in high-bay applications. The project will publish the results in a Field Delta publication and distribute the publication to a wide audience of lighting decision makers in New York State, and will hold a seminar to disseminate the project findings.


The AWL system at full output can save up to 23% over the energy used by existing Metal Halide (MH) fixtures in this particular demonstration site. Configuring the AWL system with motion sensors can improve this savings to 34 - 74% depending on which sleep and wake control modes are selected, and depending if the lamps are "grouped" or individually operated. In a warehouse application, with tall racks of storage, the AWL must be mounted below the roof truss structure which in some instances can cause difficulty in accessing pallets stored on the tall racks. The control systems were successful in operating the AWL luminaries to their intended functions once properly configured, mounted and installed. Quick disconnect features of the AWL programmed start T5 ballast were appreciated by the warehouse electrician, also power interruptions to the warehouse did NOT affect the quick strike ability for the fluorescent system, and enabled them to re-strike instantly and act as indication of a successful backup generator start.

Project Results

Successful inventory survey, product installation, performance test, energy measurement and post-survey conducted at an existing warehouse facility testing a T5 High Bay lighting fixture and controls. The fluorescent Adjustable Warehouse Light (AWL) luminaire manufactured by a New York Company (Lamar Lighting) was outfitted with a prototype lighting controls system (Wattstopper) and installed in storage aisles of a distribution warehouse (host demonstration site) in Albany, NY. Field Test Delta publication was developed, highlighting the field test, energy savings, and provided hardware and maintenance observations. Employees within the host site gave positive feedback regarding the difference and effects that the T5 High Bay lighting provided in comparison to the existing metal halide systems. Motion sensors and controlled light levels of 1/3rd, 2/3rd and full output power were evaluated and assigned respective energy saving values from the analysis.


Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute-LRC
21 Union St
Troy, NY 12180

Principle Investigator

Jennifer Brons

Universities Involved


Project Type:

Product Demonstration

Technologies Types:

Building Systems

NYSERDA Contact Information

Gregory Pedrick


R&D -Transport & Power Systems

Contract Details

Start Date: 1/11/2010
Project Status: Active
Contract Number: ST8891-1

Last Updated: 1/10/2014