Ridi makes the grade

The recent refurbishment of the Darwin Lecture Theatre at UCL in London provides the perfect showcase for Ridi’s flagship LED downlight, the EBDTurbo. Installed to provide general lighting in the theatre and adjacent corridors and toilets, the EBDTurbo delivers all the benefits of LED technology which include durability, energy efficiency and low maintenance, alongside a high light output level and uniformity of colour to achieve a productive and sustainable environment.

Located in the heart of London, UCL is one of the world’s leading universities. The campus is made up of a complex estate of historic and modern buildings from state of the art scientific research facilities to Grade 1 listed buildings dating back to the 1830s. The Darwin Lecture Theatre (located in UCL’s Darwin Building in Gower Street) is on the site of a house lived in by Charles Darwin between 1839 and 1842, following his return from H.M.S. Beagle’s second voyage. The recent refurbishment of the theatre involved a new interior fit-out, a full upgrade of audio visual facilities and a new lighting scheme.


The university is committed to environmental sustainability, including carbon reduction, within all of its teaching, research and support activities. For the refurbishment of the Darwin Lecture Theatre project over 100 of EBDTurbo LED luminaires ensure these aims are adhered to.

“The Darwin Lecture Theatre is one of the flagship facilities on our campus,” says Christopher Marshall, Team Leader (Building Services) at UCL. “It is heavily used at all times so the redesign of the interior gave us the opportunity to design a lighting scheme featuring the latest energy saving technology.” 

Correct thermal management is a crucial element in maintaining light output in any type of luminaire and is something that has restricted the performance of LEDs in the past.  Ridi’s EBDTurbo LED incorporates an electromagnetic diaphragm that gently pulses, creating subtle air movement for a convection cooling effect. This ensures that full capacity performance is maintained, even in confined ceiling voids with no natural air movement.

The EBDTurbo also incorporates a remote phosphor shield, positioned above the body of the downlighter. This significantly prolongs the life of the LEDs and ensures the uniform delivery of high quality white LED light. Modular in design, the EBDTurbo is easily maintained, with a quick lock bayonet allowing for full customisation through the easy attachment of decorative drop-rings. The luminaire housing is manufactured with a spun aluminium reflector and steel body with bezel frame, with a protective plate incorporated, to prevent phosphor degradation due to heat.

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