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Lutron Launches Six New Features for Architects & Designers

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COOPERSBURG, PA.—For too long, sophisticated lighting design required complex controls. Last year’s introduction of the Lutron Athena lighting & shading system challenged that paradigm, offering a cohesive controls solution that simplifies design and programming, while still delivering advanced lighting schemes. Now, only six months since Lutron began shipping Athena, the highly awarded solution is getting even better.

Athena is a simple, flexible, all-in-one solution that elevates everyday moments with the magic of light. The enhancements announced deliver new ways for designers to realize their visions and access even more tools to create dynamic, agile environments that adapt as building needs evolve.

“Architectural projects require a fine balance of creativity and practicality—and Athena supports specifiers in accomplishing both,” said Olivier Perrigueur, Vice President and General Manager Commercial Business at Lutron. “Designers now have a few more powerful tools to bring their creative visions to life, while easily adapting to change throughout the construction process and the life of the building.”

The Athena enhancements include new categories of control, a new luminaire option, and new app and software capabilities. 

New Categories of Control in Athena

In Athena, Lutron is taking an entirely new approach to panels, offering better design options, more flexibility, a simple pricing structure—and more peace of mind. Any fixture, any load type, any control technology—the panel can handle it all in one centralized place. It is ideal for restaurants, retail shops, and any place where minimizing back of house space is important.

For larger projects, designers can mix-and-match centralized and distributed system structures, as they see fit, under one system architecture. This flexibility enables the lighting control system to support the nuances of the architectural design, without limiting the types of lights or lighting control strategies that can be incorporated during construction and over the life of the system.

Engineered to be adaptable, the Athena panel makes it easy to respond to unforeseen changes during the construction process. Snap-in/snap-out DIN modules are a breeze to replace when fixtures and control type change.

The new Athena touchscreen is a sleek and versatile wall control that manages both lights and shades from one simple interface. The touchscreen delivers multi-zone control, eliminating the “wall acne” created when numerous switches and dimmers are installed side-by-side. This touchscreen is an excellent solution for restaurants, hotel ballrooms, houses of worship, workplaces, and other types of dynamic space. One especially useful feature for these applications: the touchscreen can be locked by admins and require an access code to make changes, preventing unauthorized use. 

New Integrations & App Capabilities

New integrations make it easier to choose Athena for projects that seek more building system synergies. Athena now supports BACnet integration, as well as integration with a variety of A/V partners including Extron, Crestron, AMX, Elan, and URC.

Since its 2020 debut, the Athena app has impressed the design community with its ease of use and continuous functionality from designer to end-user. Now, it can do even more.

A new “Places” feature enables lighting designers to manage multiple projects at once and offer remote support and quick fixes, without visiting the project site.

Also for designers, the app has evolved to improve visibility and provide more precise control of both correlated color temperature (CCT) and intensity. Specifiers can now enter an exact value for CCT and intensity and see both measured and perceived light output in the same toggle slider.

For the end-user view, new schedules and timeclock management have been added, making it easy for facility managers or business owners to ensure the light is always how it is supposed to be, automatically.

A New Ketra Luminaire

In addition to new controls, specifiers can achieve even more design flexibility in Athena by adding the newest Ketra luminaire to their designs. Lightbar Slim is a sleek, low-voltage, modular luminaire that extends Ketra light to more architectural conditions—designed to seamlessly blend under shelving, inside toe-kicks, along small coves, and any other small spaces.

Designers can now leverage Lightbar Slim’s infinite color possibilities to dial in the perfect shade of light for marble, wood, and other materials it is used to accent. With full Ketra power in a small package, it is easier than ever to deliver the Ketra experience on any project. 

Key Features Summary: 

  • New Athena panel accommodates any fixture, load type, or control technology and offers a centralized system architecture. Snap in/snap out lighting control modules are easy to change in the field.
  • New Athena touchscreen delivers sleek and versatile multi-zone control.
  • Athena system can be integrated with more systems and AV partners.
  • New capabilities make the Athena app a more powerful lighting design and management tool.
  • New Ketra luminaire—Lightbar Slim—delivers incredible light in small, linear profile.

Athena and its new features are now available for specification worldwide, including North & South America, continental Europe, the Middle East, and Asia.

Lightbar Slim will be available for specification in the United States, Canada and Mexico in July 2021.

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