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Author Topic: Better Streetlights for Tulsa  (Read 110830 times)
Conan71
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« Reply #105 on: October 19, 2010, 09:26:27 am »

I know this will probably make Patric pass out but I have two (front and back) mercury vapor lamps that shine like the sun in my yard.  Turned on at night; have a photosensor to turn them off during the day.  I prefer safety.

I keep debating on leaving my backyard lights on at night as well.  Drunken vandals generally aren't going to bother with a back yard, home invaders and burglars will.
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« Reply #106 on: October 27, 2010, 02:33:22 pm »

Perhaps the blue-spectrum lights aren't completely bad. In fact, they might improve the mood of the citizens:

http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/10/27/health.blue.light.moods/index.html?hpt=Sbin
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But it's not just any light your body craves. While daylight as a whole is beneficial, different colors of light seem to affect the body in different ways.

Light from the green part of the spectrum is important to the eye's visual system, for instance, while blue light seems to primarily affect the mind, including mood.

In fact, the impact of blue light on mood may be even greater than previously thought. According to a new study published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, blue light may play a key role in the brain's ability to process emotions.
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« Reply #107 on: October 27, 2010, 02:45:48 pm »

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In fact, the impact of blue light on mood may be even greater than previously thought. According to a new study published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, blue light may play a key role in the brain's ability to process emotions.

That's what I'd like to see at a few of the QT's late at night.  More brains with enhanced abilities to process emotions.
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« Reply #108 on: October 27, 2010, 08:45:12 pm »

I know this will probably make Patric pass out but I have two (front and back) mercury vapor lamps that shine like the sun in my yard.  Turned on at night; have a photosensor to turn them off during the day.  I prefer safety.

One of our catty corner backyard neighbors has a mercury vapor street light on the property line.  Not close to their house, it just lights the area.  It's not quite so bad in the summer since we have trees that block a lot of it.  It really su#ks in the winter.  I wish they would move it closer to their windows.  I don't think it helps their safety and it makes it difficult to see stars, the space station going overhead, etc.
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« Reply #109 on: October 29, 2010, 10:30:04 am »

Perhaps the blue-spectrum lights aren't completely bad. In fact, they might improve the mood of the citizens:
http://www.cnn.com/2010/HEALTH/10/27/health.blue.light.moods/index.html?hpt=Sbin

I hate to state the obvious, but using blue-rich light to treat SAD is done in the daytime, when the body is expecting a blue sky.
Not at night, when the body is expecting darkness.

One of the key players is how (and when) the body produces Melatonin.
In healthy people, Melatonin is produced at night as we sleep, the antioxidant hormone working with the immune system and promoting rest.  At dawn (and exposure to blue light) Melatonin production ceases, and we become alert and active.

Upset that cycle, either by not having enough blue light in the daytime, or too much blue light at night, and the body suffers both physically and psychologically.

http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/04/100412095542.htm
http://news.cnet.com/8301-27083_3-20015449-247.html?part=rss&subj=news&tag=2547-1_3-0-20 

" Earlier studies at Haifa demonstrate that, of people living in areas with higher nighttime illumination, men are more susceptible to prostate cancer and women to breast cancer than those who live in darker areas.
In this study, which involves many of the same researchers, the team wanted to test the hypothesis that light at night interferes with the body's natural production of melatonin, a hormone released during the dark hours of the 24-hour cycle and linked to the body's cycle of night-day activities.
Their conclusion: suppression of melatonin increases tumor development. "


So no, having a blue-rich Mercury Vapor or LED light outside your bedroom window, or falling asleep with the TV on, isnt doing your body any good, and should be avoided at night.
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"Tulsa will lay off police and firemen before we will cut back on unnecessarily wasteful streetlights."  -- March 18, 2009 TulsaNow Forum
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« Reply #110 on: December 17, 2010, 10:27:44 am »

Another reason to replace wasteful streetlights:  Air quality.



Study: City lights make city smog

LOS ANGELES, Dec. 14 (UPI) -- The bright nighttime lights of major metropolitan cities are making air pollution worse, a study by U.S. researchers indicates.

Scientists with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration say the glare thrown up into the sky interferes with chemical reactions that would normally help clean the nighttime air of the fumes emitted by motor cars and factories during the day, the BBC reported Tuesday.

A special form of nitrogen oxide, called the nitrate radical, breaks down chemicals that form smog and ozone.

This natural cleansing normally occurs in the hours of darkness because the radical only shows up at night, being destroyed by sunlight, the researchers say.

Measurements taken over Los Angeles show the energy from all the nighttime light over the city is also suppressing the radical.

The lights may be 10,000 times dimmer than the Sun, researchers say, but the effect is still significant.

"Our first results indicate that city lights can slow down the night-time cleansing by up to 7 percent and they can also increase the starting chemicals for ozone pollution the next day by up to 5 percent," NOAA's Harald Stark said.

http://www.upi.com/Science_News/2010/12/14/Study-City-lights-make-city-smog/UPI-14321292359886/



As many cities are close to their limits of allowable ozone levels, this news is expected to generate immediate interest in light pollution reduction as a way to improve air quality among city, state, and federal bodies, including the Environmental Protection Agency.

"(This effect) is more important up in the air than it is directly on the ground so if you manage to keep the light pointing downward and not reflected back up into sky, into the higher parts of the air, then you would certainly have a much smaller effect of this," NOAA investigator Harald Stark told BBC News.
International Dark-Sky Association (IDA) Executive Director Bob Parks is hopeful that results of this study will encourage cities to adopt environmentally responsible dark sky lighting practices that include using fully shielded fixtures, minimum lighting levels, and lighting only when necessary. "The impending transition to LED outdoor lighting will also allow cities to utilize adaptive lighting controls to dim or turn off lights when not needed. Not only will this vastly reduce energy consumption, based on this new research, it could also improve air quality.
http://docs.darksky.org/PR/PR_CityLightPollutionAffectsAirPollution.pdf
« Last Edit: December 17, 2010, 11:35:34 am by patric » Logged

"Tulsa will lay off police and firemen before we will cut back on unnecessarily wasteful streetlights."  -- March 18, 2009 TulsaNow Forum
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« Reply #111 on: January 19, 2011, 10:54:35 am »

Patric, this question is for you:

I'm about to move in to a new apartment, and after talking with the owner about the lights, he has agreed to replace all the clear plastic street light shields with new, full metal shields, like the ones you had installed in your neighborhood several years ago when KOTV ran the big news story on light pollution. In that story, it was mentioned that anyone could request the shields and pay around $30 each for them. I've searched AEP-PSO's website for information on requesting a new shield and haven't found anything.

I have, however, found how to request a new shield in Scottsdale. Why isn't this easier in Tulsa?

So, here's my main question: Where can I send him for information on requesting the installation of these shields? Is there a website or phone number I've missed?
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« Reply #112 on: January 19, 2011, 12:16:15 pm »

I'm about to move in to a new apartment, and after talking with the owner about the lights, he has agreed to replace all the clear plastic street light shields with new, full metal shields, like the ones you had installed in your neighborhood several years ago when KOTV ran the big news story on light pollution. In that story, it was mentioned that anyone could request the shields and pay around $30 each for them. I've searched AEP-PSO's website for information on requesting a new shield and haven't found anything.

They are called SkyCaps, and AEP/PSO doesnt offer them.
Nelson Electric (north of Cains Ballroom) had the Hubbell NPU-B1 SkyCap  at one time around $20, but I have seen them for much more online so it pays to look around.
RAB Lighting also makes these http://www.rabweb.com/product_detail.php?product=SHY,
as does General Electric (GE SkyGard Yard Lighting Shield SGR-1)
which are designed to re-fit NEMA-style streetlights (The ones with the open-bottomed plastic lenses).


http://www.skykeepers.org/good_fixtures/ca-shields-mods.html
http://www.greenearthlighting.com/specs/SpecRABSHY.pdf

PSO isnt as hip as this utility: http://smud.apogee.net/comsuite/content/ces/?utilid=smud&id=1663

...but keep in mind these clip-on shields are mainly to protect existing investments in utility-grade fixtures (such as those used for streetlights) as a retro-fit.  An apartment building might be using utility-grade luminaires, or cheap, incompatable look-alikes from Home Despot.

If the later is the case, there are partial shields that clip onto the acrylic lens, or you could just paint the lens with a gray primer (like PSO does when people complain about light trespass from neighbors leased lights). 

Unless the property has a substantial investment in utility grade "security lights" it might be more economical,  efficient, and better looking to just replace the fixture with one purpose-built to be shielded.

* SKYCAP_1.JPG (17.43 KB - downloaded 290 times.)
* Cap4b.jpg (8.93 KB - downloaded 275 times.)
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dsjeffries
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« Reply #113 on: January 19, 2011, 12:35:00 pm »

Thanks, Patric. It's not an apartment complex--it's an old building downtown, across from Home Depot, and it's just 3 lights. All of them are the NEMA fixtures you've displayed. One of the light poles is adjacent to the sidewalk and road, and right now, completely lacks any kind of shield. It's just an exposed bulb.

What is the process that you went through to install the SkyCap on your block? We're just looking to retrofit them with the clip-on shields... Is this something that you buy and the utility installs it, or...?
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« Reply #114 on: January 19, 2011, 01:33:04 pm »

Thanks, Patric. It's not an apartment complex--it's an old building downtown, across from Home Depot, and it's just 3 lights. All of them are the NEMA fixtures you've displayed. One of the light poles is adjacent to the sidewalk and road, and right now, completely lacks any kind of shield. It's just an exposed bulb.

What is the process that you went through to install the SkyCap on your block? We're just looking to retrofit them with the clip-on shields... Is this something that you buy and the utility installs it, or...?

I bought them from Hubbell Electric, called PSO and they agreed to install them at no charge.  They were also curious to see the results.

If the 3 lights in question are abandoned leased lights, PSO may agree to just take them down.

I should point out that when we did the retro-fit experiment in the Renaissance Neighborhood, SkyCaps were the easiest way to get existing fixtures shielded so city engineers could see the effect.

Given that many streetlights are at the end of their useful life, it would be better to just replace the whole fixture with one purpose-built to be shielded.

It would be a matter of the Mayor or Council directing Public Works to require AEP/PSO to begin using the shielded versions from this point on, for any new or replacement fixtures.

* 31525SCAMT1.JPG (3.17 KB - downloaded 276 times.)
* cobra1__14224_zoom.jpg (14.56 KB - downloaded 272 times.)
« Last Edit: January 19, 2011, 01:37:58 pm by patric » Logged

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« Reply #115 on: January 29, 2011, 02:18:32 pm »

The Color of Lights: More Than Meets the Eye
http://www.illinoislighting.org/lightcolor.html

"The colors of light created by our artificial light sources play a large part in determining both the quality of illumination they provide, and the levels of undesirable environmental impacts which they create."

(also provides an explanation as to why bluish headlights piss us off)
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« Reply #116 on: February 06, 2011, 02:24:02 pm »

Patric

We all know how much you like the acorn lights downtown.  Is there a size or type of bulb readily available that would more accurately mimic the gas lamps they try to imitate?
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« Reply #117 on: February 06, 2011, 03:24:12 pm »

We all know how much you like the acorn lights downtown.  Is there a size or type of bulb readily available that would more accurately mimic the gas lamps they try to imitate?

When the gas lamps the Acorns were intended to mimic were in use, the standard for street lighting was that of the intensity of the full moon -- but more uniform, so you could see 3-dimensionally.

That wouldn't work today because they would be overwhelmed by other light sources; cars, storefronts, etc., and trying to ratchet up modern intensities into that sort of fixture to compensate just results in glare.

If Tulsa wanted to make it's investment in faux-antique Acorn streetlights more resemble their 1900's predecessors, their intensity would have to be greatly reduced (more to a decorative level) and the actual job of lighting a busy street to modern intensity levels would be done with higher-mounted, shielded fixtures.   

It would be a have-your-cake-and-eat-it-too approach, where you have the pretty Acorn dayform by day, and adequate low-glare illumination at night.

Given the current state of lighting technology, the best way to do that might be to gut the Acorns of their Metal Halide lamp and ballast, and replace them with a Compact Fluorescent lamp similar to what you would find in your home.   Now, that alone isnt going to yield recommended illumination levels needed for an oft-used pedestrian area, so in those instances you would need to supplement the "decorative" street lighting with a more "primary" light source (like High Pressure Sodium) that is both shielded (for glare) and mounted much higher.

For the converted Acorn to resemble incandescent gas or electric light, you would want to choose a light source with a Correlated Color Temperature under 3200 degrees Kelvin (3200K).   
It's readily available, yes.


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« Reply #118 on: February 06, 2011, 03:24:52 pm »

...such an arrangement might resemble this:
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« Reply #119 on: February 06, 2011, 03:51:22 pm »

I should have asked earlier but didn't.  Did the gas lamps use a mantle or wick?
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