In its latest blog post, Osram addressed the significance of smart street lighting for future cities, noting that the digital transformation of city services is critical and will rely on connected city infrastructure.
The United Nations foresees that by 2050, 68% of the world population will live in urban areas. For enhanced safety, operational efficiency and sustainability, this growing and concentrated population need to be supported by integrated system and services. Smart street lighting thus serves as a primary smart city installation to simultaneously create the underline infrastructure for future applications.
Osram noted that smart street lighting is an ideal starting point for rolling out smart city applications because energy savings and operational efficiencies are significant and immediate. Smart street lighting offers up to 50% energy savings and 20% operational savings according to Itron, the US-based utility and energy managing expert.
Smart street lights nowadays not only illuminate roadways but also become strategic assets with integrated sensing technologies. Smart street lights can track the energy usage of each street light on the network and automate light levels based on activity in the area. It can also track environmental conditions such as CO2 levels, monitor traffic flow, identify collisions and other safety concerns.
As a result, smart street lighting can supports sustainability by saving power use. It also improves public safety with automated lighting adjustments that brighten or dim lights according to natural conditions or population in the area that improve visibility for pedestrians and cyclists and helps reduce accidents and crime. In addition, it gather data gathered on accidents to identify what intersections are the most dangerous and need redesign. Applications that monitor temperature, humidity and air quality can be integrated into the system as well. Gas leaks, earthquakes, gun shots, and other dangerous situations can be identified quickly to improve public safety response times.
Benefits of smart street lighting also include operational efficiency enhancement by automating management and delivering more precise outage information. Through the reducing the need for truck rolls and mobile crews, networked street lighting can increase operational savings.
Finally, since utility companies offer rebates for energy reduction but require data to validate energy savings, smart street light applications can provide the data needed for rebates and incentives from utility companies resulting in potential additional savings to taxpayers.