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LED Lighting And Sensors Could Be The Future Of Street Lighting

A small town in Denmark just might be the key to how we make and sell LED lighting to cities in the future.

In September, Albertslund, Denmark will launch the Danish Outdoor Lighting Lab (DOLL), which will become a massive experiment in both energy efficiency and LED technology.  The suburb of Copenhagen will attach their street lights to a variety of sensors, so they will only work when they are needed.

Major American cities like New York and Los Angeles have already switched their outdoor and street lighting to LED. The result has almost eliminated maintenance costs, and the programs in each city have already paid for themselves. Back in 2009, the street lamps alone in New York and Los Angeles cost $15 million each every year to light up the city, and pumped out 111,000 tonnes of carbon.  Street lamp lighting accounts for nearly 6 percent of global greenhouse emissions.

The DOLL program will light a 5.7 mile stretch of raod with sensors that will monitor traffic density, weather conditions and noise. Those factors will determine if the lamps should be on or off based on the usage of the street below them. This all comes in addition to switching to LED lamps.

Every lamp will be given an IP address to it can be controlled from a remote location. The lamps will dim when the sun comes up every day, and if a few people are walking past them at night, automatically become brighter. The IP address will also send out an alert if something is not working correctly.

Sensors will also track traffic density and weather conditions to determine the brightness of the lamps, and should lower costs even further.  DOLL is encouraging other cities to start similar projects. So far only Barcelona is on board with trying to do something similar.

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