Correct lighting tech can improve safety

5th November 2021 By: Darren Parker - Creamer Media Contributing Editor Online

Correct lighting tech  can improve safety

ENLIGHTENED BEKA Schréder’s LED luminaires have a CRI of about 70, which provides a much more natural colour – similar to natural daylight – for better perception

Using inappropriate lighting technology in environments with high levels of flammable liquids, vapours, gases or combustible dusts could increase the likelihood of fire or explosion, resulting in injury, damage to property and even death, explains lighting solutions company BEKA Schréder Africa marketing and segment development manager Grant Combrink.

It is, therefore, highly important that the technology, as well as the supplier of luminaires for these locations, is supported by certifications and market reputation, he tells Mining Weekly.

The company designs and manufactures its luminaires not only for hazardous locations in the oil and gas and petrochemicals industries but also a range of other industries.

“However, these luminaires are very specific to the applications within the respective locations. We ensure that the dangers associated with these locations or zones are covered under the high specifications of our product,” he says.

BEKA Schréder designs and manufactures luminaires that are well-suited to Africa’s harsh environmental conditions, and the company embraced light-emitting-diode (LED) technology and its associated benefits in 2009.

The company supplies luminaires to the upstream, midstream and downstream segments of the African, Australian and South American oil and gas industry.


The upstream segment mostly consists of refineries. Combrink explains that strict rules and regulations govern which luminaires may be installed in such highly explosive environments, also known as EX environments.

BEKA Schréder offers a range of EX class luminaires, certified for illuminating hazardous areas.

Some of the LED products supplied by the company that have been certified for EX use include the LEDNova LED bulkhead, the BEKAbulk, the linear Vapourline LED, the LEDbay highbay and the Omnistar and Omniblast-E floodlight ranges.

Combrink explains that, typically, most locations in hazardous areas tend to be poorly lit, with light sources generating light with low colour rendering index (CRI) values.

The CRI value indicates how well a light source can show the real colour of an object. Colour authenticity improves as the CRI value increases. The maximum CRI value is 100, which is equal to the CRI of the sun.

Moreover, using traditional light sources often generates much spill light, which can be dangerous in its being unintentionally blinding through a disability glare.

Combrink says using BEKA Schréder’s LED luminaires results in not only reduced energy consumption but also the correct amount of light being provided exactly where it is needed for that area, while generating white light with a CRI of more than 70.

The key advantages of BEKA Schréder’s EX classified LED luminaires include a high-use factor for optimum energy saving while maintaining a long useful life for high ambient temperatures above 35 ºC, and corrosion-resistant aluminium high-pressure die-casting manufactured according to EN 1706 AC-44300.

The EX class luminaires also feature exterior mounting lugs, an ingress protection rating of up to 66, and stainless steel clips and hinges for the protector enclosure.

Combrink says these products have been certified by an accredited independent laboratory to SANS/IEC 60079 and SANS/IEC 60598 standards, with the relevant permits and certificates supplied to all customers.


Midstream activities are a vital part of the oil and gas industry, including transportation and storage. In Africa, the midstream segment of the oil and gas industry comprises many independent transportation operators, with numerous depots and warehouses that all need lighting.

In addition to the requirements for ensuring that such hazardous areas are illuminated by certified equipment, additional considerations have to be taken into account for lighting, Combrink notes.

“In busy working environments, all employees – from delivery drivers to warehouse staff members – need quality lighting to work safely and accurately operate machinery. The quicker and easier it is to see a hazard, the more easily it can be avoided.”

The lighting must not cause a glare or flicker that could initiate headaches and, eventually, sick building syndrome – which is where building occupants experience acute negative health and comfort effects that appear to be linked to time spent in a building, but where no specific illness or cause can be identified.

Moreover, lighting should not cause employees to misjudge situations and provoke accidents.

BEKA Schréder’s LED luminaires, which have a CRI of about 70, provide a more natural colour, similar to natural daylight, for better perception; this improves safety.

The company’s lighting solutions adhere to industry best practices and comply with local and international regulations to provide the required lighting levels to ensure the health and safety of all employees, Combrink adds.


Combrink says the downstream segment consists mainly of end-users using oil and gas commodities. This is naturally an extremely broad segment, and includes factories and service stations.

BEKA Schréder offers a wide range of luminaires, which caters for the needs of this segment.

“Our company’s objective is to provide the right lighting solutions by optimising the optical and mechanical design of luminaires. Using contemporary technologies, the goal is to offer intelligent and sustainable lighting solutions to reduce energy consumption, as well as the overall cost of ownership,” he concludes.