F+P 550 is the first of a brand new range of lighting fixtures, the result of an exciting and productive partnership between Louis Poulsen and Foster + Partners. The design teams were convinced that there was a way to use large numbers of LEDs to create a fixture that did not just challenge the technical limits of LEDs, but surpassed the functional to achieve a fixture appropriate for the Louis Poulsen portfolio.
The family of objects that comprise this 'kit of parts' is versatile, rising to the challenges presented by both indoor and outdoor demands to create a seamless transition between the two. The optimum lighting effects were the overriding concern during the design process, rather than a need visually to demonstrate the technology - for this reason, the LED light sources are hidden from view. This is in the spirit of Poul Henningsen's approach - his drawings depicted the lighting effects of a fixture, rather than the workings of the light source.
Stripped to function and elegant form, the fixture deals efficiently with the limitations of the technology - the beauty of the design being that the light source expresses simply the transference of light.
F+P 550 mostly generates downward light, even though the light is reflected to avoid glare. However, a small amount of light is directed through the light guide to fade out through the opal glass and create a smooth contrast between lit and unlit parts. Despite the very low height of the fixture and the very high luminance from the LEDs, the fixture is completely glare-free.
F+P 550 consists of four major parts: a shade made of opal glass, a matt anodised aluminium reflector, a light guide of metallised polycarbonate and an aluminium ring covering the 30 LEDs. It has a diameter of Ø550 mm and a height of only 35 mm.
Initially conceived as a fixture for the professional segment, it also has potential for private applications.
Foster + Partners, one of the most innovative architectural practices in the world today, is based in London with project offices worldwide. Over the past four
decades the practice has pioneered a sustainable approach to architecture and ecology through a strikingly wide range of work, from urban masterplans,
public infrastructure, airports, civic and cultural buildings, offices and workplaces to
private houses and product design. The practice has received 470 awards for excellence and won 86 national and international competitions since its inception in 1967.
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