ETC Paradigm® helps Fort Worth Museum of Science and History reduce lighting costs

Texas’ new Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is 30% larger than the former facility. But, as Charlie Walter, Vice President of Programs for the museum attests, “The utility bills have remained comparable. Efficient systems – including lighting – are the reasons for this.” ETC’s Unison® Paradigm architectural-lighting control and Sensor®+ dimming are part of that solution.

Walters explains the need for the museum construction and overhaul: “The former facility was outdated and literally loved to death. We could not host the latest traveling exhibitions due to small gallery size and low ceiling heights. And our technical infrastructure was worn out.” Numerous staff hours had been wasted with the old lighting system, which had to be operated manually from circuit-breaker panels. Automating the lighting and increasing its energy efficiency were high on the priority list.

Lighting Designer Jill Klores, LC, of Essential Light Design Studio in Dallas, was brought in when the original design firm left. Klores lists the facility’s goals: “The exhibit lighting system needed to be flexible and easy to maintain. The architectural lighting needed to quietly integrate with the design, express the architectural features, and functionally light the space for day-to-day use as well as for special events. The control system needed to support all of the above and be easy to use.”

Klores was also asked to reduce the cost of the lighting system by 25%. The ETC control and dimming had already been specified. Given the new financial mandate, changes to specifications could have been made. “However, we thought ETC was the best system for this project,” states Klores. “We worked with Jeff Mabray [ETC representative, Edwin Jones Company, Dallas, TX] to get the leanest system possible and still provide for all of the needs and most of the desires of the museum.” The resulting design uses three ETC Paradigm processors controlling ten Unison and Sensor+ dimming racks.

“The ETC system fully automates the lighting in most areas of the building while still giving the museum local control,” describes Mabray. “The only time they need to interact on a system-wide level is when after-hours events are scheduled. Where needed, controls for individual rooms are provided by keypads. The rest of the time, the building operates on both a timeclock and daylight-harvesting basis” (Paradigm monitors the presence of daylight in each space and adjusts to use artificial lighting only where daylight is not adequate).

Says Walter: “We are very pleased with our lighting system.” And Klores adds that the customer support was “absolutely fabulous” throughout the project: “Jeff Mabray was there to answer technical questions during the design process, assisted us and the electrical engineer with schedules, and was on-site non-stop during the final install. I would definitely use ETC again.”

Installation

Museum of Science & History, Fort Worth, TX

Product List

Quotable

“We are very pleased with our lighting system. I would definitely use ETC again.” -- Charlie Walter, Vice President of Programs


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