Illustration of lighting innovations
Let’s shed a little light on Finnish illumination. Image: Julia Helminen

FIVE FROM FINLAND: Lighting

This notable quintet is helping the world to see the light with Finnish innovations.

Zhanna Koiviola

26.09.2022

Much is made of Finland’s see-sawing levels of daylight during the year. The world is also waking up to innovative lighting solutions illuminating the future from up north.

Let there be light! These are five of the leading Finnish lighting experts.

VALOA design

a metro station in Helsinki

The role of lighting is fundamental in underground spaces, VALOA design believes. This was kept well in mind when working on the award-winning Helsinki west metro station project. Image: Kuvio Oy

The Tampere-based lighting design company targets its services to cities, buildings, construction companies and the like that want to illuminate their architecture or infrastructure. Advertising and marketing are also fields in which VALOA sees enormous potential for light design companies.

“We no longer talk about lamps, but signals, communications and the ways in which we experience our environments,” lighting designer and CEO Roope Siiroinen told us earlier. “It’s a whole psychological entirety.”

Over its 25-year history, VALOA has worked on a wide range of projects in Finland and abroad, including in China, and won numerous awards and recognitions. One of the company’s most notable achievements to date is the Helsinki west metro station project that won the Nordic Lighting Design Award 2020. The jury was impressed by how the lighting was well-integrated with the architecture and the final result appeared innovative, yet visually durable.

“The award means a lot to us and feels like a well-deserved prize after years of hard work, co-operation and building the field of lighting design,” Siiroinen commented.

Casambi

hand holding a mobile phone

Casambi’s state-of-the-art wireless technology enables modern smartphones, tablets and even smart watches to control lighting. Image: Casambi

Since its foundation in 2011, Espoo-headquartered Casambi has been developing state-of-the-art wireless lighting control systems and has gradually evolved into the market leader with offices also in the US and Singapore.

Based on Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), Casambi’s solution consists of wireless software and hardware components which are integrated by luminaire manufacturers into their products and used by professionals to create and control lighting environments. The smart system comes with mobile apps to easily configure and manage the lights.

Today, practical examples of Casambi’s technology can be found in offices, museums, shops and homes across the world. According to Casambi, wireless lighting control not only helps to significantly reduce the ecological footprint of a building, but also plays a central role in creating attractive spaces which offer outstanding user experiences and better occupant wellbeing.

“Lighting has traditionally been kind of accidental. It is always a bit too bright or dark with limited controls,” pointed out co-founder Timo Pakkala. “But today, tunable lighting makes it possible to mimic natural light and even change colour temperature based on the weather outside or what someone is doing. We call it lighting that fits the purpose.”

Merivaara

surgeons in an operating room

Merivaara’s award-winning Q-Flow light enables the surgical team to visualise their work with incomparable accuracy and guarantees maximum possible freedom from bacteria and pathogens in operating theatres. Image: Merivaara

With its roots going back to 1901, Merivaara is internationally acknowledged to be a forerunner in intuitive health technology and industrial design with a special focus on operating room solutions. An integral part of its product range is medical lights, with the Q-Flow operating theatre light winning the 2017 Red Dot Award.

The light enables surgeons to detect exact tones as they operate and automatically eliminates shadows as the medical staff move. Moreover, its unusual doughnut-like shape has been optimised for air circulation. It reduces the number of twirling particles in the sterile work environment and thereby lowers the risk of infection.

Last May marked the beginning of a new chapter in Merivaara’s history as it got acquired by Sastamala-headquartered Lojer Group, the largest manufacturer of hospital and care furniture in the Nordic countries. With the help of its new subsidiary, Lojer aims to expand into a new business area, namely operating room products.

“Merivaara combines long traditions as an equipment supplier for Finnish healthcare with internationally recognised technological knowhow,” Ville Laine, CEO of Lojer, emphasised.

“We will continue in operating room products under the Merivaara brand, as the 120-year-old Merivaara brand is well known and respected worldwide,” he added.

Lumine Lighting Solutions

a brightly lit city at night

Lumine Lighting Solutions is an expert in smart street lighting, with its technology fitting well with the goals of an intellectual and energy-efficient urban environment. Image: Facebook / Lumene Lighting Solutions

Reducing energy consumption by approximately 75 per cent, the automated street lighting developed by this Helsinki-based company is activated by motion detection. The wireless interlinked system increases the brightness of all nearby lighting units once movement is detected, guaranteeing pleasant lighting conditions when and where needed.

The motion detection is based on a combination of industry standard PIR-sensors and sophisticated algorithms to process the sensor data. The Lumine Manager tool completes the lighting infrastructure with real-time status information of any connected luminaire, as well as reports any malfunction to the maintenance operator.

“We are saving energy by dimming down the luminescence in areas where there is no use for light,” software engineer and co-founder Santeri Oksanen told us a few years ago. “We are also reducing light pollution without sacrificing the comfortability and security gained by lighting.”

Today, Lumine’s smart lighting solutions can be found in many cities across Finland, including Helsinki, Turku and Oulu, helping to illuminate motorways, pedestrian and cycleways. Moreover, Lumine’s technology allows also for collecting and analysing data on people flows in the city, which eventually can be used for much more than street lighting control.

TSR | ELSITE

a worker by a lamp at a construction site

TSR | ELSITE has been in charge of the lighting and electrification of numerous well-known construction sites throughout Finland and beyond. Image: Facebook / TSR - ELSITE Oy

It was in late 2020 that Finland’s TSR Group and EL & Site joined forces to become a true powerhouse in the field of worksite electricity. The joint company’s core competence lies in construction site lighting and temporary power products, as well as construction supplies, generators and storage systems.

When it comes to worksites, the proper choice of lighting is crucial as it not only ensures safe working conditions, but also helps to reduce overall costs. One of the company’s flagship products, the MBerg light, has been designed specifically to withstand the rough conditions of construction sites by being robust, maintenance-free and highly energy efficient.

Thanks to their many advantages, TSR | ELSITE’s lighting solutions have made their way to construction sites around the globe. In their homeland, the lights have been used for the most demanding and challenging projects, including the new Bridge Hospital, which is the largest construction project in the history of HUS Helsinki University Hospital.

“450 people work on the site every day. It’s an expensive bang if the lighting doesn’t work or there would be a long power outage,” commented Matti Julin, site manager with main constructor CRV. “That is why it is important that we choose a reliable partner and products. We wanted the best on the market.”

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