flex7 have helped to dramatically increase efficiency of radiotherapy units at Musgrove Park Hospital, Beacon Centre using their ZoneLite Lighting Control Modules.

The Brief

Provide a lighting control solution that’s easy to install, strip out and replace on a regular basis. The system should not require specialist commissioning.

Extremely harsh conditions inside units affect lifetime of every products installed, meaning replacement of control modules is unavoidable. Replacement has to be reduced from current turn around time of 2-3 weeks, to decrease overall downtime of units.

The Solution

The Hospital is one of many across the UK who have a specialist unit to treat cancer patients. High-energy x-rays, produced by a linear accelerator (Linac machine) are used to accurately target the site of the tumour. These machines are housed in highly restricted rooms with 2m thick walls, which are commonly known as Linac Bunkers.

The Hospital is managed by Vinci Facilities, who were looking for a solution to replace the complicated lighting control system in their 3 Linac bunkers. The old system was hardwired, required specialist commissioning, and used technology that over 10 years old. Due to the extremely harsh conditions the control system was exposed to, it had a limited working life. The control panel needed to be dismantled and sent back to the manufacturer every few months for refurbishment and reprogramming. This unavoidably took the room out of action for 2 to 3 weeks at a time, resulting in increased waiting times for patients to receive vital cancer treatment.

The damaging environment inside the bunker is impossible to negate, so a way of reducing downtime was needed. Flex7 were able to offer a solution that dramatically decreased downtime when the control module reached the end of its life, from 2 to 3 weeks, to mere minutes.

The flex7 solution offers more functionality than the previous system, simple plug and play connection, controls operating at Protected extra low voltage (PELV) and no specialist commissioning. The control module can simply be unplugged and replaced in under 5 minutes, thus requiring little to no downtime for the bunker. Karl Marillier of Vinci Facilities was delighted with the outcome of the project saying “It is such a simple system. User friendly. Easy to maintain.”

A flex7 ZoneLite Lighting Control Module was supplied for each Bunker. Each control module is fitted with a supply lead, complete with a flex7 plug on one end. This plugs into a flex7 Single Socket Outlet, which provides power to the ZoneLite Module. If the ZoneLite Module fails under the harsh conditions it can simply be unplugged from the supply, and a new one can immediately be plugged-in to replace it all in under 5 minutes

How it works

The ZoneLite Module operates 4 separate lighting circuits:

Circuit 1 Luminaires in the corridor outside the bunker. These are controlled by a simple on/off switch.

Circuits 2 & 3 Luminaires down either side of the bunker. Controlled by a simple on/off switch.

Circuit 4 DALI dimmable luminaires controlled by a flex7 Scene Setting Plate.

Handheld Control – flex7 lighting control works in conjunction with the Linac Machine’s integral control. This means the operator can control both the Linac and the lighting from their handheld remote control console should they wish to.

Download NHS Radiotherapy Bunkers Case Study