Engineers are helping with plans to build the world’s largest crystal chandelier for Cleveland’s Playhouse Square. The 20-foot chandelier will use 4,200 crystal pieces and tens of thousands of GE LED lights and lighting modules. The light piece will be permanently suspended 40 feet above the street from a special steel support system.
The “GE Chandelier,” as it will be called, will top Doha’s Reflective Flow light piece, which measures 19 feet in height at the tallest point, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
GE LED lights illuminate many global cities and landmarks, including London’s Tower Bridge, New York’s Statue of Liberty, and several World Cup 2014 arenas in Brazil. LEDs are much more energy efficient than traditional light bulbs. The Tower Bridge system, for example, will cut the landmark’s energy demands by 40 percent and stay in place for 25 years.
The LED, or light emitting diode, is a revolutionary device invented in GE labs by engineer Nick Holonyak Jr. LEDs need as little as one third of the power to shine like ordinary 100-watt light bulbs, and last up to 25,000 hours.
LED fixtures can also connect to the Industrial Internet. One such GE system will soon allow entire cities to harvest data from street lights, manage maintenance, monitor usage, and identify and eventually anticipate power outages. GE’s next-generation Roadway “intelligent” lighting will allow communities to remotely adjust their street lighting and alert utilities to power outages.
Cleveland is the birthplace of GE’s lighting business. Last April, the company celebrated a centenary of its Nela Park labs, where GE founder and Ohio native Thomas Edison experimented with early light bulbs.
“We are celebrating what has defined Nela Park for the last 100 years and GE for more than 130 years, the relentless drive to invent and make things that matter,” GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt said last year. “We are celebrating innovation itself.”
The unveiling of the GE Chandelier is scheduled for May 2, 2014.