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​​​​​​​​RIC’s OmniLED lighting system in Parking Lot E8, powered by OmniFlow


RIC is the first college in the country to make use of an outdoor lighting system driven by wind and solar power, said RIC Sustainability Coordinator Jim Murphy.

Manufactured in Portugal​ by OmniFlow and distributed in the United States by Costa Electric, the OmniLED lighting system is able to generate power without connecting to a utility grid and comes with an battery back-up system of over 1,400 watt hours that can be used off-grid or integrated with OmniLED systems connected to the grid.

Since May 11, RIC has been test-running two OmniLED lighting fixtures installed in Parking Lot E8 behind the Kauffman Center, while Costa Electric has been tracking the system performance through remote web-based monitoring. Currently, the lights are producing 20 percent more electricity than needed to operate them.

The idea of partnering with Costa Electric was the initiative of RIC Trade and Fire Safety Manager for Physical Plant Administration David Benevides, who encouraged Costa Electric to use RIC’s campus as a test site. Both the manufacturer and distributor agreed, noting RIC’s commitment to sustainability.

OmniLed lighting system will also be used as subject matter for a new course titled “LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Lab.” This 350-level topics course, to be ​introduced this fall, will be cross-listed in both the School of Business and the Environmental Studies course offerings.

Upon the end of the course, students will have the opportunity to sit for the LEED AP O+M exam, the passing of which confirms that they have a thorough understanding of green building practices and of the LEED rating system.

LEED is a rating system devised by the United States Green Building Council to evaluate the environmental performance of a building. For a building to become LEED-certified it must maximize energy efficiency and make the most of renewable, sustainable resources. 

Rhode Island College is committed to establishing energy-efficient facilities and operations and achieving technological advances in recycling, waste minimization, substitution of materials, production processes, pollution control and more efficient usage of resources. Recently RIC was named a 2017 Green Ribbon School by the U.S. Department of Education.​