Would LEDs Have Kept Us In The Light At The Super Bowl?
For Baltimore Raven’s fans, today is the best day ever winning the Super Bowl against the San Francisco 49ers 34 to 31. However, it could have easily gone the other way with help from what is now called the ‘Superdome Blackout.’
During the third quarter for more than a half-hour, the lights went out in New Orleans for what is yet another Super Bowl malfunction. For 34 minutes, officials were trying to figure out what exactly went wrong. Why did the power go out and yet some of the lights were on for half of the stadium? Even the CBS audio for Jim Nantz and Phil Simms went down. Rumors are endless on the Internet from the 49ers causing the outage to disrupt the Raven’s lead to a possible cyber terrorist attack on the power grid. Even going as far as saying the power was handled by a Venezuelan company called Corpoelec and they deliberately caused the outage. Others just state that Beyonce’s halftime performance was too ‘electrifying.’
Other reports say that the stress on the New Orleans power-grid was just to demanding and simply went out, causing yet another strike against the city still struggling to regain its infamous name since hurricane Katrina. Auxiliary power kept the playing field from going total dark but escalators, credit-card machines and all the concourses were only lit by emergency lighting. Even halftime host James Brown said a ‘power surge caused the outage.’
FBI officials have since ruled out terrorism and New Orleans fire department dismissed any reports that a fire caused the outage so the question remains. Some reports go on to say that a piece of equipment from Entergy New Orleans, the city’s power company, sensed an abnormality in the system and shut itself down as a safeguard. So for now the speculation remains.
So if the power supply required was to great at the Superdome then it lends to ask why did they not use a more energy-efficient light source like LED lighting? Most stadiums currently use 1000-watt metal halide Sportslighters to light their field. LED lighting manufacturers are currently testing fixtures that will lower the wattage to around 250-watts, savings 750-watts per fixture. In addition, the LED Sportslighters are instant-on, thus no longer requiring the warm-up time of 15 minutes that is associated with the Sportslighters of today.