How to Light, IoT/Smart Lighting

How to Light: What is DALI-2?

This question has been answered by Dr Scott Wade, technical and certification manager, Digital Illumination Interface Alliance (DiiA).

DALI-2 is the updated and improved version of the DALI lighting protocol, which includes more features and more product types and has a strong focus on product interoperability. Specifically, DALI-2 refers to version 2 of IEC 62386, the international DALI standard. DALI-2 extends and enhances the strengths of DALI as a dedicated, standardised protocol for digital lighting control. For years, DALI has been used to build lighting systems that are robust, scalable, cost effective, reliable and flexible. But now, for the first time, DALI-2 brings standardisation to system components such as sensors and other input devices, as well as application controllers, which are the ‘brains’ of a DALI system.

To create DALI-2, the original DALI standard was restructured and improved. DALI-2 incorporates more detailed and rigorous testing requirements, which are intended to ensure that products from different suppliers are able to work together. To support this interoperability promise, the DiiA introduced the DALI-2 certification programme. This enables DiiA member companies to certify that their products meet the requirements of the DALI-2 standard, including features that ensure interoperability.

One of DiiA’s key roles is to create DALI-2 test procedures for DiiA members to use, and also to verify the test results before certification is granted. An independent verification step was not part of DALI version 1. Certified DALI-2 products can carry the DALI-2 logo, and all DALI-2 certified products are listed in the online DiiA product database.

Compared with the original DALI version 1 standard, DALI-2 includes clearer specifications for control gear features such as timing, fading, power-on and start-up, as well as new features such as extended fade times. DALI-2 is designed for backwards compatibility, so DALI-2 control gear can be used in older systems.

DALI-2 certification is already available for a broad selection of product types, including LED drivers, control devices (single-master and multi-master application controllers), standalone bus power supplies, and devices with integrated bus power supplies. Further product types – notably sensors of different types, as well as control gear for emergency lighting systems – will follow when DiiA members have created the necessary test sequences.

For more information on how DALI-2 compares with DALI version 1, click here.

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