Let’s move on to the next phase of a project.
You’ve chosen a supplier. Their design works – on paper. You know it meets or exceeds your needs. And it’s on budget. You give it the green light and it gets completed. You may think that’s it, job done.
But it’s not.
You’ve got to check that what was promised in the design phase is true to real life and it really complies with or exceeds what’s required by your local aviation authority.
Here’s an example why. Istanbul Airport asked 10 major lighting suppliers to pitch for an upgrade to the airport’s lighting. As part of the pitch process, they asked each supplier to set up two test poles to demonstrate they could reach the compliance levels shown in their designs. 80% didn’t pass the test. The Airport Authority was very relieved they ran the test!
And you need to go on testing and verifying your lighting regularly, with a documented testing methodology, to make sure it stays compliant.
As an example, Frankfurt Airport had a new system installed during the winter. After live testing, it was confirmed it matched the light levels needed. In fact, the lighting exceeded what was required, as a ‘buffer’ had been allowed for in the design. Six months later, in the summer, when they ran the tests again, the levels had fallen by 20%. They were still within the required levels though because of the ‘buffer’. The airport however was obviously concerned why they’d fallen and what would happen in the coming months and years. When they tested again in the winter, the lighting was back to its original levels. It was the ambient temperature change between the winter and the summer that was having an effect. By factoring this into their testing methodology they were able to make true comparisons going forwards, test after test.
The lesson here? Test, measure, and verify regularly to make sure you stay compliant with regulations. And going a bit above and beyond what’s required in the standards is never a bad idea…