Lighting Control Systems

A lighting control system is an intelligent network based lighting control solution that incorporates communication between various system inputs and outputs related to lighting control with the use of one or more central computing devices. Lighting control systems are widely used on both indoor and outdoor lighting of commercial, industrial, and residential spaces. Lighting control systems serve to provide the right amount of light where and when it is needed.

Lighting control systems are employed to maximize the energy savings from the lighting system, satisfy building codes, or comply with green building and energy conservation programs. Lighting control systems are often referred to under the term Smart Lighting.

Energy Savings

Energy savings are achieved when the illumination of a space is maintained to the task requirements and with lights on only when needed. Examples include time-based control of shopping mall lighting and photocell control of external and street lighting so that lights are only on when needed. Occupancy sensors are used to switch (or dim) lighting automatically depending on occupancy.

Dimmable and automatically adjusted lighting levels are shown to reduce lighting energy consumption by between 10% and 30% (on top of energy savings in changing from traditional light sources to LED lighting).

Optimising and Integrating Control Systems

Timers, sensors and programmable systems can be used individually or in combination to optimise control effects. For example, occupants can switch lights on manually and then sensors and timers can automatically adjust the light level including switching lights off at night or when a space is no longer in use. Lighting control systems can be integrated with other building systems, allow central management and include open protocols for multiple vendor choice.

Maintenance, including emergency light testing and general lamp replacements, can be automated to assist facility managers meet their statutory obligations, instantly flag failures and optimise replacement planning.

Lighting control systems are recognised in the Building Code of Australia and when used, provide additional flexibility to allow increased lighting levels to be specified if needed.


The major advantage of a lighting control system over stand-alone lighting controls or conventional manual switching is the ability to control individual lights or groups of lights from a single user interface device. This ability to control multiple light sources from a user device allows complex lighting scenes to be created. A room may have multiple scenes pre-set, each one created for different activities in the room. A major benefit of lighting control systems is reduced energy consumption. Longer lamp life is also gained when dimming and switching off lights when not in use. Wireless lighting control systems provide additional benefits including reduced installation costs and increased flexibility over where switches and sensors may be placed.

Lighting controls can be used in all types of buildings and lighting applications including residential, commercial, industrial and public lighting.



Lighting Council of Australia – Lighting Controls Introduction, online at [accessed 10 May 2016].