Team Led by E. Graettinger Wins IES LIGHTEN UP! Luminaire Competition

Camille Thompson
Nov 6, 2021 12:16:19 PM

Eric Graettinger, PE, LEED AP BD+C, vice president of Peter Basso Associates and his team, were recently named the winners of the 2021 Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) Luminaire Competition, LIGHTEN UP!

According to the IES website, 'the competition was founded by IES member, Laura Ashley A. Alferes. With networking in mind for cross-section and cross-organization collaboration, this was initially a local event that grew internationally. The 2018 competition had 4 participating IES sections and 2019 had 14 participating sections.' In other words, the competition has continued to gain momentum since its start.

The purpose of the competition is to, 'bring individuals within the design community together to engage, inspire and challenge one another to create a luminaire made from everyday objects.' 

This year's theme was, "Just Light-Years Away... What's the future of lighting look like?" According to the description, the theme is open to interpretation and to participants of all levels of experience.

Graettinger and his team the, 'Illumineighbors' submitted their design titled, 'What the Faculea.' According to their description, 'Faculae is the plural of Facula. A Facula is a bright region on the surface of the sun linked to the subsequent appearance of sunspots in the same area. Graettinger described the concept behind their design as, 'a futuristic pendant light (that) allows for various “bright regions,” illuminating “planets” on the perimeter of the fixture housing, creating a multi-faceted lightsource. The bottom of the fixture is open and the top of the fixture is unpainted to provide additional indirect lighting and visual interest.'


Graettinger is an active member of the IES Detroit Chapter. He currently serves as a Board of Manager Member of IES and a Past-President of the Detroit Section.

For more information on the competition, go to:

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