Copenhagen starts large-scale smart LED lighting experiment

Copenhagen starts large-scale smart LED lighting experiment

Technology News |
By eeNews Europe

The city authorities are busy implementing a climate change plan to turn Copenhagen ‘carbon neutral’ by 2025. An integral element part of the plan involves the city redesigning its streetlighting solutions.  Worldwide, lighting is the source of six per cent of global greenhouse emissions.

The Danish Outdoor Lighting Lab (DOLL) a GreenLab by Photonics is to be open September 2014 and will stretch for about 9 km along the roads of the Copenhagen suburb Albertslund and will cover about 1.5 square kilometres in total.

Hundreds of lights will be installed in Albertslund and its local citizens will take part in a major experiment to examine how future cities should use streetlighting.

As many as 25 companies have reserved space for their products in parcels of land 300 metres square. Each lamp is being assigned a separate IP address to enable remote monitoring. The project plans to test smart lamps that dim if it is sunny and brighten if a few people pass by at night.  Other smart lights will be used to automatically send out alerts when they are not operating correctly.

Sensors that track traffic density, air quality, noise, weather conditions and UV radiation will also be fitted throughout the site to see what sort of environment the lights are operating in and will indicate which lights are making the biggest difference in terms of lowering costs and emissions.

DOLL wants to encourage more cities to make the change by demonstrating what different types of lamps can do and describes the project as a "huge urban playground". The project is described as a ‘Living Lab’.

Michael Nissen-Petersen, key account manager in Street & Outdoor Lighting Thorn Lighting A/S explained it is important to show customers what is the effect of dimming the lights by 50 percent.  "It is our experience that customers are becoming more confident at turning down the lights when they see it work in practice. Typically, they think that if we dim the lights by 50 or 70 percent, it will have a dramatic effect. But from personal experience, they can see that in an outdoor environment it can be difficult to tell the difference."

In the future, DOLL plan to incorporate other types of smart city services into their living lab. The same network that monitors miles of lighting can be configured to manage parking spaces or water meters.

"The light is just the first step. We work in the Living Lab with the intelligent city in which we can measure and manage other aspects of urban space. This could be sensors in bins that indicates when to be emptied, " explained Kim Brostrøm, CTO of DOLL.

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