Lux Intelligent - Knowledge Base

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Does Lux Intelligent only work with self-contained systems?

Lux Intelligent can work equally a well with fully self-contained emergency lighting systems as well installations that use central battery or static inverters to provide their emergency cover. 

The flexibility of the system ensures all the necessary operating characteristics of a self-contained luminaire can be monitored and reported, whilst also allowing luminaires to be simply monitored for actual light output in the case of central battery or static inverter supplied units. 

As an added bonus, the control panel can interface to such systems and force them in to test as well as monitor for such units reporting faults.

What is Lux Intelligent?

Lux Intelligent is an automatic emergency lighting testing system, manufactured by Advanced Electronics, and has been in operation for over 15 years.

The Lux Intelligent panel constantly monitors the state of all the luminaires on the emergency lighting network, reports any current faults on the network, and automatically executes scheduled testing of the luminaires on the network.

The emergency lighting testing panel works in unison with a PLU unit which is fitted inside each luminaire.  The PLU contains the electronics used to simulate an emergency situation and put the luminaire into it's emergency state.  It will then monitor the battery and light level states and report that data back to the panel.

Lux Intelligent also includes desktop PC software for collating the Luminaire status and test history information into Panel Reports, providing a log of the test shedule and historic test results.

Additional to this Lux Intelligent also has a cloud monitoring service which allows a customer to amalgamate data from all the panels in their emergency lighting network, or from multiple emergency lighting networks into a cloud storage platform, and then access that data in real time via their mobile device or a dedicated web browser based interface.

Why do I need an emergency light test system?

By law, emergency lighting is required within buildings that the public has access to (See What is Emergency Lighting?). It also applies to places of work. 

This is implemented through compliance to standards and codes of practice.  The standards are not just aimed at defining the design of emergency lighting, i.e. how much light and where, but it also covers the installation, commissioning and importantly, the testing of an emergency lighting installation

The codes of practice and testing requirements are outlined in BS 5266 and associate parts as well as EN50172.

How often should an Emergency Lighting system be tested?

The following minimum inspection and tests should be carried out at the intervals recommended below.

Daily Emergency Lighting Inspection

This interval specifically applies to central battery source emergency lighting systems.  In this case a visual inspection of the indicators on the central power supply to identify that the system is operational.  No test of the system operation is required.

Monthly Emergency Lighting Testing

All emergency lighting systems should be tested monthly.  This is a short functional test in accordance with BS EN 50172:2004 / BS 5266-8:2004.

The duration of the test should be sufficient to ensure that the luminaire operates correctly, whilst minimising any damage to the system components, e.g. Lamps, Battery.

It is important to note that the entire system doesn't have to be tested at the same time.  The system can be tested in sections, over a testing schedule, so long as each luminaire is tested each calendar month.

Annual Emergency Lighting Testing

The annual test should be a full rated duration test to ensure that the emergency lights are still working and producing the acceptable level of light at the end of the test.  So for example if a luminaire is rated for a 3 hour duration, then after 3 hours in an emergency situation the light should still be lit.

It is worth noting that this full duration test should be completed at a time of low risk of an emergency situation so that the batteries have sufficient time to recharge.

How is Emergency Lighting Testing Conducted?

Once an Emergency Lighting system has been installed, it should be tested regularly to ensure that it satisfies the requirements of the emergency lighting system and that it operates correctly in an emergency situation.

The testing of the Emergency Lighting system can be carried out either manually or automatically.

Manual Testing of an Emergency Lighting system

A simulated mains failure can be achieved by providing a switch which will isolate all lighting circuits, individual circuits or individual luminaires.

The system is tested by simulating the mains failure by using the supplied switch(es).  Once the circuit(s) or luminaire has been isolated the tester should walk the circuit to check that all emergency lighting luminaires are operating correctly.  After restoring the power to the circuit(s) or luminaire the tester should walk the circuit again to ensure that the emergency lights are recharging.

Disadvantages to manual testing of the emergency lighting system include the cost of an engineer to carry out the testing, and also the potential for disruption to normal activities due to the power to a lighting circuit being isolated.

Automatic Testing of an Emergency Lighting System

An automatic emergency lighting testing system will automatically interrupt the mains power supply to a luminaire or a group of luminaires and detect that the emergency luminaire operates correct, and upon reinstating the mains power supply it will ensure that the battery charges.

The information is collated centrally, allowing the facilities management or building management to collate the testing results.  These test results must still be recorded and collated along with the Commissioning Certificate and Log Book for the system.

BS EN 50172:2004 / BS 5266-8:2004 (Emergency escape lighting systems) specifies the minimum provision and testing of emergency lighting for different premises. Additional information on servicing can be found in BS 5266-1: 2011 (Code of practice for the emergency lighting of premises).