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Putting the Past to Good Use in the Silicon Valley of the Nineteenth Century

Click here to see the online version of the DOE report that discusses the lighting in the Burden Museum. The main section about the Museum is on pages 16 to 21.

We are now in the final stages of installing an all-dimmable, all-LED lighting system at the Burden Museum. This project was made possible by a very generous $100,000 challenge grant from Brookfield Renewable Energy, which was matched by two $50,000 contributions, one from the Rensselaer County Industrial Development Agency (IDA) and the other from the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA).

The installation is a pioneering foray into the use of dimmable LED technology in a public commercial setting. Such a system would not have been possible as recently as five years ago. As a result, we were chosen as a national case study by the United States Department of Energy. See box to the right for a link to their report.

Finally, we have designed the project so that visitors can enjoy an educational display about lighting through the years. The system will be able to mimic the various modes of lighting that would have been used in such a facility, from gas lighting when the building opened in 1882, through early Edison carbon-filament incandescent lighting, then on to the twentieth-century workhorse tungsten-filament incandescent lamp, and then to the many innovations in the past seventy-five years or so, starting with fluorescent lighting and leading to today's strikingly efficient LEDs.

We'll let you know as soon as the system is fully in place, so you can come to see it for yourself.

 

As you may have noticed, the new Gateway site at this point is still very much in development, but we've decided to make it public now so you can try it out. Only some of the features are working at the moment, but we'll be adding new content on a regular basis from now on. Do please let us know what you think of it.

Until this site is complete, we'll keep the old site online as well, so you can visit that to find your old favorites there. Eventually, we'll be moving all that content over to this new site. But in the meantime, click here for the Classic Version of the Gateway Site.