Towns and cities are faced with the challenge of lighting public spaces to improve the quality of life for citizens and support economic development while reducing energy consumption and preserving the environment. A firm believer in leveraging digital technology to find long-term solutions, the local authorities of Bad Hersfeld chose a group of hi-tech partners to implement a smart lighting network that would help it and other cities achieve all of the above. The town wanted a lighting system that would:
- adapt the light levels according to traffic density;
- adjust the colour temperature (from 2,200K to 3,000K) based on the time of day;
- manage the light distribution depending on the weather;
- enable it to collect data regarding the operating status of each luminaire and
- integrate other smart additional devices.
Smart investment in scalable public lighting infrastructure
The local authorities wanted futureproof infrastructure that would enable them to use the latest technology available today and that could be scaled up over time. They chose our high-performing IZYLUM and FLEXIA luminaires fitted with our FlexiWhite system that adapts the colour temperature to preserve the environment. All of the street lights are controlled by Schréder EXEDRA, which has already been successfully deployed in other areas of the town.
The right light at the right moment to ensure safety with less energy
An initial pilot project was set-up with 77 IZYLUM and 88 FLEXIA FG Midi street lights in 2 different districts of the town. It demonstrated that the new lighting system did indeed deliver a light that meets the exact needs of the area.
The street lights also integrate sensors that record and capture data regarding the weather, traffic, speed and environment which is sent to a platform developed by our partner Urban Lighting Innovations GmbH [ui!]. The UrbanPulse platform then assesses the data in real-time and makes it available for other applications.
Consequently, the lighting in these areas is adapted to the real-time traffic and road use. This will maximise safety for pedestrians and motorists during peak hour traffic and save energy when there is very little or no movement. By dimming the light when it is not needed, the city will also dramatically reduce light pollution.
Smart lighting to ensure safety in all weather
In the residential areas, the street lights have also been fitted with different optics so that the light will adapt to the weather conditions. As pavements and roads can be slippery when it rains, the light will increase visibility so people can adapt their behaviour, thus increasing safety.
Light that adapts to preserve the environment at night
The street lights are also equipped with our FlexiWhite solution which adjusts the colour temperature. They switch between a bright white light in the morning when people need to be alert and a warm white light in the evening to protect our skies and wildlife. The solution is managed by Schréder EXEDRA.
The light in residential areas or in green areas that are close to nature has to be different to the lighting on our main roads. If we manage the light by adapting it to according to the weather or season, it will not only improve the quality of the light but will also be very interesting economically.
A pioneering smart lighting project
This innovative project called “Urban Intelligence as a Service” is being carried out in collaboration with Deutsche Bank, Microsoft, Urban Lighting Innovations GmbH [ui!] and the Technical University of Berlin to help cities worldwide to transform the way in which they manage their street lights. For the first time, a city can simultaneously control the light distribution, light output and colour temperature of its street lights with an intuitive interface.
Thanks to the connection with the UrbanPulse platform, the data can be used for other applications, such as adapting traffic lights to enable emergency services to navigate traffic quickly.
Smart city means involving citizens
The local community will be able to control the light levels of the luminaires according to their own needs with a special app. The data from the app will be analysed over a specific period to predict energy consumption, user behaviour and incidents, in coordination with the Technical University of Berlin. Initial feedback has shown that the citizens are very happy with this option and are using it on a regular basis.
Initial results are promising
After collecting data for a few months, the city of Bad Hersfeld is delighted with the results. It can see a clear reduction in energy consumption and thus carbon emissions which will help it achieve its environmental goals. Light pollution has also been reduced which will help the local wildlife to thrive.
A first reward from Smart Cities Connect
The project was rewarded a 2022 Smart 50 Award by Smart Cities Connect. This award takes place annually to recognise innovative and forward-thinking smart city projects.
The system is pioneering and a really critical step towards climate neutrality, which the town has set as an objective for 2035. With such bold innovations, we can achieve that goal.
We are delighted to participate in this project which is enabling the town of Bad Hersfeld to lay the foundations for a smart city focused on people and the environment using street lights.