Thursday, January 31, 2008

Lights on?

From my office I can see that the big stadium lights have been burning all day long at the Durham Bulls Athletic Park. Seems wasteful, not to mention annoying-- since I'm running around putting expensive compact fluorescents in all my fixtures at home. If someone knows where the switch is over there, I'll gladly go turn them off for cryin' out loud.

Is there a reason, maybe similar to the reason why the astroturf at Duke has to be watered (even in a drought) that the stadium lights at the DBAP have to be on (even during the daytime)?

Distant and extremely low-res cell phone pics but even so you can see the huge white glare of 2 of the lights on a sunny day:


Barry Ragin said...

There's usually a certain amount of "burn-in" required for stadium lights, although that's most often done just before the season starts. It may be that the lights have been recently replaced?

Here's a funny thing. Back before the 73 oil embargo, night baseball games used to start at 8:05. Start times were moved up to 7 pm, to "save energy."

Never mind that the lights were turned on at pretty much the same time.

But before 73, average length of a baseball game was about 2 hours 30 minutes, so the game would end at 10:30 or so. Nowadays, the average length of the game is about 3 hours and a half, so the game still ends around 10:30 or so.

No energy savings, unless they're using compact fluorescents up there, which i doubt.

Jeff Hart said...

that's probably it, barry. i've noticed similar testing and maintenance at kenan stadium at what appear to be odd times of the day (i recall an electrician was killed at kenan a year or so ago pre-season while working on and testing light). at camden yards, they go to great lengths to aim the lights as well before the season starts - which is only about 60 days off (though i'm sure the dbap will get a bit of action with drills and batting practice with the team prior to opening day as well).

Durham Bull Pen said...

Well now I know. Still seems incredibly wasteful (something at least akin to watering the astroturf at Duke) but I guess that's the price we pay, or someone pays, for having sports to enjoy.

Barry Ragin said...

pitchers and catchers report in two weeks, if i'm not mistaken.

Anonymous said...

There was some kind of event there today since they alerted ATC residents that there would be fireworks at 2pm this afternoon.

Anonymous said...

Er, which probably doesn't relate since you posted this 4 days ago. Oops!