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Lutron’s AuroRa Lighting Control System

When Lutron Electronics introduced its low-cost AuroRa radio-frequency-based lighting control system during the Summer of 2006, not even the most optimistic company executive could have imagined the overwhelming response it is now getting from the professional installation and builder channel. Afterall, the product was packaged as a Home Depot-style DIY system, not a dealer product.

“We are very pleasantly surprised by the reaction to this product,” said Tom Murphy, new accounts development manager for Lutron. “We’re seeing our high-end installers buying systems for their employees, and using it as a new entry-level option, and builders love it.”

Styled like a traditional toggle switch, the pre-programmed AuroRa system is available in a package containing five dimmers, one master control, one wireless controller, and one central antenna. Each master control button controls a single dimmer, while the master control’s “All On” and “All Off” buttons control all five dimmers at once. The wireless controller turns lights on and off from the car, providing safe entry into a dark house.

Last month Lutron added a new security package for the system that provides visual alerts to neighbors and rescue vehicles during in-home emergencies. In the event of an alarm, all indoor lights controlled by the AuroRa lighting control system will turn on to full bright, while all of the entry lights controlled by the system will flash.

An AuroRa system installs as quickly and easily as five light switches. A five-button tabletop master control and car visor clip-on wireless controller provide remote access of lights. The system’s compact plug-in central antenna ensures reliable RF communication between all devices, and can be placed in a closet or under a bed.

The suggested list price of the five-dimmer package is $750; the security package is $950 (and includes the same hardware). Packages are available in white, ivory, almond and light almond and contain five dimmers, one tabletop master control, one wireless controller and one central antenna. To increase the capability of an AuroRa system, simply add up to nine wireless controllers or bridge two systems together.

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