Pat Knodel installs LED lights

The expansion and renovation of our Nome broadcast studios and facilities has been a major project of recent years.

With The Tom and Florence Busch Digital Studios, our goal is not only to increase the size of KNOM’s production and broadcast spaces but, also, to modernize them: with hardware that, compared with our current technology, is more power-efficient, easier to maintain (even in remote Nome), and more likely to keep serving our mission well for decades to come.

While the new studios aren’t yet ready for use as broadcast facilities, some of the technologies they’ll employ — and that will be incorporated into our existing studios, as renovations — are already being tested. One example: LED lights.

Pat Knodel installs LED lights

Nome contractor Pat Knodel installs LED lights in KNOM’s existing studios. Photo: David Dodman, KNOM.

The LED light fixture you see being installed above (by Nome contractor Pat Knodel) is the first of its kind within KNOM. It’s a bright, clear light that fits into the existing housing used by fluorescent lights, but its bulbs use less energy (18 watts per tube rather than 32 watts for fluorescents), and they’re expected to last much longer (10 or even 20 years, rather than 3), making them significantly cheaper in the long run — not to mention, more pleasant to use.

Replacing the most frequently-used fluorescent lights within KNOM’s existing studios with energy-efficient LEDs will cost, we estimate, $5,889.24 (42 fixtures at $140.22 per fixture). With the nearly doubled energy efficiency already described — and Nome’s current electricity costs of 40.3 ¢/kWh — we estimate the bulbs will have paid for themselves in 2 years. Soon, we hope, LED lights will illuminate both our old studios and the new — thanks to you.