Is it a Skyscraper or is it an LED Screen?!

The entire CWTC facade serves as a veritable screen of white digital light, which recently had a festive video for the holiday season. 

But it’s not just a Christmas event. In partnership with China’s Beijing Fortune Lighting System Engineering Co. Ltd, Signify has been providing changing light scenes on the building exterior for about a year, using 400,000 white LED light points from the Philips Color Kinetics eW Flex Micro positioned in exterior cavities so as to not disturb people inside, Signify said.

The recesses — basically holes in the wall — didn’t get there by accident. Signify said it worked with architects from the onset to assure the lights could be strategically angled. The lead design architect for the building, completed in 2010, was Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, and the structural engineering lead was Arup.

Lighting designer Kaoru Mende and his Tokyo-based Lighting Planners Associates played a key role. The LED lighting work began in 2015, went live last year, and has been fined tuned over the ensuing months.

Up top, Signify lights the exterior in changeable, programmable colors to celebrate occasions, much like its technology does at the Empire State Building in New York City, and at Taipei 101 in Taipei, both of which are taller than CWTC. At CWTC, Signify deployed 88 sets of Philips Color Kinetics ColorReach LED floodlights, spanning about 100 vertical feet.

It’s all controlled by a Philips Color Kinetics Video System Manager Controller, operated by the end user — the China World Trade Center management team — which decides what scenes to display, sometimes under request from government authorities.

Signify, formerly called Philips, still uses the Philips product brand. In China, the company itself is still legally known as Philips, where the name change takes effect early next year.

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