A technology developed by the Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) collects sunlight connected to special indoor light fixtures. The technology has earned an Excellence in Technology Transfer Award from the Federal Laboratory Consortium for Technology Transfer.
The hybrid lighting technology uses a rooftop-mounted collector having a diameter of 48 in., and a secondary mirror that track the sun throughout the day. The collector system focuses the sunlight into 127 optical fibers connected to special light fixtures equipped with diffusion rods similar to fluorescent light bulbs. The rods spread light in all directions.
One collector currently powers eight to 10 hybrid light fixtures that can illuminate about 1000 ft2 of space. During times of little or no sunlight, a sensor controls the intensity of fluorescent lamps to maintain a constant level of illumination.