LED lighting – meshed Bluetooth transforms lighting controls networks: Page 2 of 6

July 27, 2017 // By Matthias Kassner and Saara Guastella
LED lighting has revolutionised the lighting industry and creates completely new market conditions. Bluetooth Low Energy is a protocol optimised for controlling smart lighting. Due to its unique combination of low power communication with wide-spread support in smartphones, it provides an interesting alternative to other communication protocols such as zigbee and Wi-Fi and can be combined with other technologies to make smart lighting even smarter.

To meet these use cases, LED control based on standardised wireless technology is the most effective choice due to quick installation and easy upgrade with minimal interruption. Wireless has increased in popularity in the last decade due to advances in radio technology and the emergence of standards, which enables seamless communication between different devices.

The third phase is characterised by lighting systems becoming a data backbone for IoT applications. There, the lighting system continues to provide traditional lighting; in parallel however it generates and transports a wide variety of sensor data to the cloud.

Taking the example of a lighting system with occupancy sensors, the basic functionality continues to be controlling the light. In addition however, the occupancy sensor data can be used to determine the space utilisation of the office. Furthermore, the wireless network established between the light sources can be used to transport sensor data which is not directly related to lighting control, e.g., temperature, humidity or air quality sensors.

Analysing this data can yield a range of insights, which can be used to make your smart lighting respond to factors such as ambient light, humidity or CO2 levels. You can also use the data to count people, log events, deliver marketing messaging at the right time or help manage crowds.

Figure 1: From lighting control to IoT (Source: Casambi).

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