Lighting is, of course, one of the most important electrical infrastructures and is very demanding in terms of high energy consumption. By reducing maintenance costs, smart LED lighting has become a key player in IoT. The benefits of such systems are available to everyone, from government and large businesses to everyday consumers. Due to their advantages, IoT smart lighting systems are becoming increasingly popular and have a huge number of use cases. In this article, let’s take a closer look at how smart lighting works and what its main benefits are.
How Does Smart lighting Work?
Smart lighting is a technology aimed at increasing the energy efficiency and comfort of using artificial light sources. The system consists of energy-efficient LED drivers, various advanced control algorithms, sensors and communication interfaces for interaction. At its core, a smart lighting system is conceived as a flexible system with the goal of increasing visual comfort as well as the efficiency of energy. The principle of modern is based on light emitting diode (LED) technology. At the moment, this technology is relatively new, but it is actively developing. The future of this market looks promising. The global intelligent lighting market is expected to grow by more than 20% in the next few years.
Smart lighting uses different connections to link the system to a smartphone or any other device. And by using an app, users have the ability to control the functioning of the lighting. For example, the connection is possible using WiFi or Bluetooth technology. When the devices are linked via WiFi, the connection is made to a central device to which all home devices are connected. In the case of Bluetooth, the connection between the smartphone and the lighting fixture is direct. There are other wireless communication systems used for lighting, such as Zigbee.
This IoT system uses wireless switches, so they don’t have to be connected directly to the lights. These lights are connected to a network, allowing them to be monitored and controlled from the cloud. Through the Internet or a mobile app, people can control individual lights or groups of lights based on occupancy, light levels and time of day. Also, control systems can automatically perform the following functions: turn on the light when someone enters the room, dim the light as natural light increases, and change the light to the desired color or shade of white. In addition, many systems have advanced features. In addition, luminaires can have built sensors that store and transmit information about the facility, including occupancy, air quality and temperature. And the more information the system provides, the more efficiently it can be managed.
Smart lighting plays a significant role in unlocking more IoT capabilities and creating its applications. For example, if a system is installed in commercial buildings, employees can control lighting using their smartphones or tablets. They can adjust the lighting throughout the building, making it dimmer or brighter depending on the amount of natural light. In addition, lighting in offices and conference rooms can be adjusted according to occupancy or preference of people.
As for the use cases for such systems, there are a huge number of opportunities. For example, in retail, LED lights with sensors can communicate with customers’ smartphones to determine where customers are in the store and send them coupons and promotions while they pass by certain products. In addition, the system helps to significantly improve security in commercial buildings. With sensors everywhere, you can quickly identify and respond to security breaches.
Types of Smart Lights
There are already many systems available on the market, which vary in design as well as in their purpose and characteristics. Depending on whether the system is used for residential, commercial or street lighting, it will have different functions and features. Let’s take a look at the main types of smart systems aimed at different markets.
Smart light bulbs
Smart bulbs are LED light bulbs that are used for residential lighting. Like other systems, they are connected to the Internet and users can configure, plan and control lighting remotely. They are among the most successful offerings in the growing category of home automation and Internet of Things products. Importantly, such devices are characterized by their simplicity. To use smart bulbs, you don’t need to change your home’s lighting system or hire an electrician — you just need to plug the bulb into the sockets of existing lights and lamps.
Smart street lights
Street lighting is known to be one of the largest energy costs. When smart and communication capabilities are added to street lighting, it allows to control and monitor fixtures from a central control system remotely. Using modern systems will not only provide greater energy and maintenance savings, but it will also transform the way cities are managed. It also makes it possible to provide many smart city services, such as weather monitoring, traffic control, and emergency broadcasting.
Smart light fixtures
When using IoT lighting in different manufacturing facilities or retail environments, the system will provide a lot of opportunities to enhance energy efficiency and improve working conditions. One of the most important features is that light luminaries include different sensors, which allow for optimizing their performance. Thanks to the integration of intelligence and networking, the luminaries can communicate with each other and with a centralized control system. If the lighting runs on an IoT platform, it significantly reduces the consumption of energy and ensures better comfort and productivity.
Benefits of Smart lighting
Smart lighting plays a very important role in unlocking the power of the Internet of Things and smart building applications. It provides numerous opportunities for control and customizing. Here is a list of the main benefits of such systems, which show why it is one of the most important and vital electrical infrastructures.
Enhancing security and increasing public safety
Reducing crime is the main task of every city government. The widespread implementation of smart street lighting systems will make a tangible contribution to improving safety. Thanks to this, street lighting will provide data to be used to improve public safety. As for private use, for homeowners, the system can turn on lights as if someone is in the house. With smart lighting, users can change the color or brightness of lights in any room and even control them from their smartphone from anywhere in the world.
Reducing maintenance cost
Thanks to control systems, municipalities have benefited from reduced energy consumption, which brings economic and environmental benefits. In addition, control systems provide real-time diagnostics, reducing maintenance and consumption costs. Importantly, such systems indicate maintenance requirements in advance and prevent serious problems.
Improving energy efficiency
Thanks to the IoT connectivity, the system collects, manages and communicates usage data in real time, allowing municipalities and city planners to use more controllable data to improve infrastructure. Switching to smart LED lighting is estimated to save 40 percent of all lighting energy. It saves a huge amount of money in city budgets that can be spent on other urban improvement projects.
Enhancing the Comfort of Occupants
As for the use of modern systems, smart lighting can be controlled with a smartphone or tablet. This, of course, contributes greatly to comfort. You will be able to control all the smart lights and other appliances in your home from anywhere there is an Internet connection. For example, when you’re lying on the couch with a cup of tea and watching a movie, you can turn off the lights to make you comfortable by picking up your phone. It makes the smallest things easier.
At the moment, IoT lighting systems are in the early stages of development, but their popularity is growing rapidly as the cost of the technology continues to fall. This allows businesses and consumers to equip their lighting systems. The important point is that such systems are very easy to use — you do not need to change the wiring or cause electricity to start using them. IoT-based lighting is a powerful solution with new delivery models for a wide range of usage scenarios in healthcare, retail, schools, and many other places. These systems optimize business efficiency and people’s daily work, whether in homes, stores or workplaces.