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South African city upgrades to smart city LED lights

Once the installation is fully operable, the new lighting system is expected to reduce energy consumption by 30 per cent

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A three-year smart lighting initiative is underway in Bloemfontein, South Africa
A three-year smart lighting initiative is underway in Bloemfontein, South Africa

The city of Bloemfontein, South Africa, has embarked on a smart city initiative to upgrade its streetlight infrastructure over the next three years. It plans to deploy 18,000 luminaires from Echelon Corp, an independent control networking company for the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT).

 

Bloemfontein is generally regarded as the judicial capital of South Africa, being the seat for the Supreme Court of Appeal. It is also a high-profile sporting venue and a centre for casinos, private hospitals and educational establishments. This means the city’s needs tend to change on a daily basis.

 

In the first phase of the programme earlier this year, 3,000 luminaries were installed by IoT solution provider and Echelon partner MAT Co. The complete solution will integrate Echelon’s SmartServer, PL smart transceivers and control router with MAT’s luminaire controllers and smart energy management system.

 

Once the installation is fully operable, the new lighting system is expected to reduce energy consumption by 30 per cent and projected to provide a return on investment in as little as five years. The partners added that it will also improve safety and decrease maintenance costs.

 

“Bloemfontein is home to many students, tourists, athletes and healthcare and business professionals who require the safety and reliability of state-of-the-art street lighting,” said Dennis Baik, overseas sales manager, MAT Co.

 

“One of the reasons city officials selected our integrated solution, was so they could efficiently troubleshoot and address lamp malfunctions before any issues emerged. As a result, they can better protect the people that traverse the city, and create an opportunity to attract even more business and tourism.”

 

The smart streetlight system is powered by MAT’s Luxmatic with its smart energy management system (SEMS) and Echelon’s SmartServer. Luxmatic is a smart street lighting control system that lets engineers control brightness, measure energy consumption and monitor the status of each individual lamp in real-time.

 

The SmartServer controller and router connects control devices to IP-based applications such as building automation, enterprise energy management, demand response programs, and high-value remote asset management programs. Additional products included in the system are MAT’s CDM light, electronic ballast and luminaire controller, as well as Echelon’s PL 3120 chip and CRD 3000 control router.

 

“Bloemfontein city managers will recognise the long-term benefits of an intelligent, adaptive solution that can serve as the foundation for a smart city on which they can continue to build for years to come,” added Rick Schuett, senior vice president of worldwide sales, Echelon.

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