Grissom Air Reserve Base

North Central Indiana | Military Airfield


Grissom Air Reserve Base is located in north central Indiana. The host unit is the 434th Air Refueling Wing which consists of three major groups and a variety of squadrons and flights. The wing develops and maintains the operational capability of its units and train reservists for worldwide duty. Grissom ARB is home to units from the U.S. Army Reserve and U.S. Marine Corps Reserve.


Weather conditions such as high winds and large amounts of snow were a concern. Energy usage and lighting maintenance costs were high. A tornado knocked down a light pole in Grissom’s aircraft mass parking area and damaged three others in the fall of 2013. The base took the opportunity to evaluate other lighting options to find a better lighting solution for their needs.


The project included replacement of the 1000W high pressure sodium lights. New poles were also installed to better withstand the elements and prevent a recurrence of the downed poles.


62 Ephesus Stadium 1000 LED fixtures were installed with 6-14 fixtures per pole at a height of 80′. Once the full project is complete, a total of 110 fixtures will illuminate the two airfields.


Energy savings are estimated to be 75% and an average of 5 fc is generated on the airfield’s surface. Fixture count was reduced from 151 to 110 due to the lensing technology which precisely focuses light in specific areas. The Ephesus LED upgrade eliminates maintenance costs and provides a brighter light that illuminates a greater area and makes for safer airfield operations.

“The project has a payback period of 2.88 years; the Air Force requires a 10-year payback period for any energy project. This project clearly exceeds their requirements and has a return on investment of 35 percent.”
— Michael Bowden, 434th CES electrical engineer