A student at the California Lighting Technology Center at the University of California, Davis, reviews her luminaire design concept as part of a winter 2010 lighting design studio.
Courtesy CLTC A student at the California Lighting Technology Center at the University of California, Davis, reviews her luminaire design concept as part of a winter 2010 lighting design studio.

Students at the University of California, Davis's California Lighting Technology Center (CLTC) will get to see their design ideas made real, from initial concept to a realized prototype, thanks to participating in their winter 2010 lighting design studio, taught by director of the CLTC and professor at UC Davis, Michael Siminovitch. Students were tasked with designing and building an LED luminaire using materials donated by course-sponsor manufacturers Tyco Electronics, Cree, Exclara, Lightech, and WattStopper/Legrand.

The CLTC is a research and education facility that focuses on energy-efficient lighting and daylighting technologies through collaboration with industry partners—including manufacturers, utilities, and government agencies. The studio provided students with exposure to lighting equipment and the ability to transform lighting ideas into working fixtures. The projects from the class of 26 students were reviewed by a team of manufacturer representatives and professors from the CLTC and architecture program at UC Davis. The jury members were: Siminovitch; Holly Miller from Tyco Electronics; Arye Schreiber from Lightech; Keith Graeber, director of engineering at the CLTC; Mark Kessler, professor at UC Davis; and Patricia Harrison, professor emerita.

This jury recognized five of the student projects. First place went to Anne Rubenstein for the downlight she designed, second place was awarded to Josephine Pan for her wall sconce concept, and Anna Lok received third place for her garden luminaire. Kai Wan and Ashley Huot received honorable mentions for the ingenuity and creativity they showed in their designs. “Design education is more than the evaluation of the end result,” says professor Siminovitch. “Learning occurs through the creative process … Our lighting industry sponsors fuel the imaginative potential of tomorrow's lighting designers with their support and collaboration.”

The manufacturer sponsors have provided engineering resources, so that the top three student designs will be prototyped for a display during Lightfair 2010 in Las Vegas. (They will be on view at the Tyco Electronics booth.) Additionally, WattStopper/Legrand has provided the first, second, and third place winners with small stipends to offset travel expenses to Lightfair. For more information about the CLTC and its programs, go to cltc.ucdavis.edu.