The LED Vapor Tight fixture co-developed by Shat-R-Shield (LV) and NICOR, Inc. (VT1) was designed using thermally engineered polymers for corrosion and UV resistance for lighting harsh environments. It is able to withstand moisture, dust, and salt spray. This high efficiency luminaire weighs five pounds, delivers more than 100 lumens per watt, and offers two packages with approximately 3,500 and 7,000 lumens. It is designed for use in marine facilities, natatoriums, industrial facilities, food processing plants, waste water treatment plants, cold storage, parking garages, wash down areas, tunnels and subways, construction sites, airports, and other harsh environments. It is suitable to replace a two- or four-lamp 4′ T8 fixture.
With a joint submission by NICOR, Inc. and Shat-R-Shield, the thermally conductive plastic LED Vapor Tight luminaire was introduced in May 2015 at Lightfair International in New York City. There, it was awarded recognition among industry peers as Most Innovative Industrial, Vandal, and Emergency and Exit product.
Building upon an existing relationship with Shat-R-Shield, NICOR became aware of their desire for developing a harsh environment LED product. As a result, NICOR’s chief operating officer and lead design engineer, Doug Welter, presented a physical design concept model and collaborated with Shat-R-Shield’s new product development manager, Don Cattoni, to fill that need.
By leveraging NICOR’s manufacturing channels in conjunction with Shat-R-Shield’s knowledge of advanced polymer technology, an LED Vapor Tight fixture (VT1/LV) was created. The fixture is manufactured with thermally conductive, engineered polymers specifically designed to withstand moisture, dust, and harsh environments in applications where exposure is detrimental to the life of the luminaire.
The design effort began with NICOR performing extensive thermal simulation modeling to define what specific properties were required of the polymers. Optical engineering, based upon proven NICOR LED products, was also applied to the new fixture. The mechanical design process considered the thermal, mechanical, and optical systems, as well as how to provide water drainage paths so the fixture could ultimately be NSF certified, used in wash-down installations, and stand up to corrosive environments. Several prototypes were built on which extensive engineering tests were performed until the current LED vapor tight (VT1/LV) was introduced in May 2015.
“Initially, manufacturing presented many challenges as the new thermally conductive polymers were very difficult to mold. We worked very closely with our manufacturing partners to modify equipment and processes to achieve the final product,” remarked Welter. “We also wanted to use the very leading edge of LED technology to achieve maximum efficiency. This required careful design and testing to maintain high efficacy and reliability in this new fixture configuration. Even working with the testing labs proved challenging, as in some cases UL had not worked with a fixture like this before so some testing had to be modified.”
“By conjoining the assets and talents of the two companies, we were able to create a product that is unique to anything else on the market,” says Tom Salter, vice president of marketing and product development at Shat-R-Shield. “We are thrilled to have received recognition with an Innovation Award and look forward to providing our customers with a viable solution for a variety of industry applications.”