Wisconsin Patent of the Month – May 2021

Many automated systems use sensors to control their settings – for instance, automated window coverings use time or light to indicate their cover. But these systems rarely consider the microclimates and cannot respond rapidly as such. Some lighting systems use LED technology to permit discrete adjustments of light levels or color temperatures. MechoShade Systems has integrated these precision technologies to develop a responsive control system utilizing sky cameras.

Their system uses cameras to capture images of the sky and assess the color temperature associated. Their control system takes these characteristics into account and communicates this information to then adjust the window covering. The covering can be lowered or raised to block or allow lighting as needed. This way, the system lets in the optimum amount of light, adjusting as the microclimate experiences changes. The key sky modes include overcast, night, clear sky, partly cloudy, sunrise, sunset and so on. In addition, it can contribute to the color temperature within the room by controlling the artificial light sources in the room in addition to the natural light sources (windows). Through the use of LEDs, the amount of white or other color light can be influenced and optimize color temperature in the room. Optimizing both light input and color temperature can help improve circadian rhythms and improve sleep patterns in addition to energy efficiency within the building. 

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