The right lighting is essential for any museum. Each exhibit needs a lighting scheme that will preserve the artistic, historical, or scientific integrity of the articles on display. And it just has to look good too.
If you’ve already landed on a lighting scheme that works for your museum, you’re probably apprehensive to change it, even if you could save money.
Good news: Upgrading your museum lighting is easier than you might think. There are a ton of small, barely noticeable changes you can make to your museum lighting that will save you energy. Also, newer energy-efficient lighting options may actually provide more versatile, higher quality light for your displays.
Let’s get started, shall we?
1. Guide Lights
If you have dark areas in your museum – night simulations or moody displays – you’ll always need small guide lights to keep your visitors safe and comfortable. These are things like step lights along staircases and rope lights along pathways or handrails. These lights will never add to or take away from the integrity of your display. They’re just there. So why not save a little energy with them?
The most energy-efficient step lights and guide lights you can find on the market are probably LEDs. They’ll last much longer than older incandescent lights and most fluorescent lights, and they’ll produce the same brightness while only using a fraction of the energy.
2. Exit Signs
Exit signs are necessary features in any museum, but it’s not necessary that you use a lot of energy to operate them. A good LED exit sign only costs $2 to operate every year. Compare that to the $39 it costs to run a single incandescent exit sign. The LED will pay for itself within a year!
If you’re even more ambitious about saving energy, you can opt for photoluminescent exit signs. They’re made with a special material that absorbs ambient light and emits it when the lights go dark. No maintenance or electricity required. (more…)