The casino floor at Sun International’s Times Square Casino spans over 7530 m2 on two levels and makes way for the time-themed, futuristically-designed casino with 988 digital screens that are used to generate evolving mood experiences. At its widest point, its roof spans 85 m and covers over 10 000 m2.

Time Square LightingDesignAccording to Ryan Ashford-Smit of Triac, the project pushed the boundaries of LED dimming technology, incorporating special lighting effects and light synchronisation throughout the day so “the energy and vibe is continuously emotive”.

In an installation that is altogether striking, what stands out upon entry to the casino are the matrices of LED channels that form patterns of light on both floors of the casino and abut a mesh of fibre optic lighting that hangs above the bar area. Each of the channels links to a downlighter, of which there are many to ensure the correct lumen levels to the gaming tables, while strategically placed infinity mirror tunnel LED lamps add to the extraordinary effect. This portion of the lighting installation was by Giantlight.

Ashford-Smit says the concept of using geometric patterns of light and colour sequencing to transport visitors to a radical new world is very successful. The different colours and contrasts subtly change the atmosphere; chromo-therapeutically stimulating a variety of feelings, moods and emotions; disrupting circadian cycles and keeping people awake and stimulated. This is the opportunity a casino affords, and is what differentiates Times Square from others.

The LED channels are populated with RGBW LEDs on a circular download. The installation cycles through 26 scenes each day to create the chosen spectrum and, according to Ashford-Smit, the cross-fade between colours is so seamless it is barely noticeable.

Lighting control was central to the success of the installation, not only for the scene changes and dimming control but also to achieve the maximum energy saving. Triac used the Intellibus system, a South African designed and manufactured digital lighting control system. Bespoke PWM dimming panels control the RGBW LED channels, whilst Intellibus LED low power dimmer modules control all the LED downlights. The four-channel PWM dimmers offer direct linear LED control for precise and predicatable control of each channel simultaneously.

With over 800 channels, the installation is large. There are in excess of 40 dimming panels, neatly divided into eight board locations, each controlling a particular segment of the casino floor on both levels. Each segment has a ‘commander’, and all the controllers are linked on their own dedicated networks to create one robust prevailing integrated system.

On top of this, Triac incorporated an Axium controller and touch screens to manage the network and integrate various third party systems, such as audio-visual. It also interfaces with the casino’s main control system to create special effects at certain times – i.e. red for Valentine’s Day – or for certain occasions, such as multiple flashes and sounds to celebrate a jackpot win. The system also incorporates the lighting around the periphery, including restaurants, to ensure these light levels are maintained and controlled to benefit the tenants while complementing the casino floor.

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