A TECHNICAL development by Signify is set to bring solar street lighting to a wider range of applications and countries.
The launch of a new integrated charge controller enables the emergence of hybrid solar systems.
These enable streetlights to use solar-powered electricity when there is sunshine and the mains grid at other times.
The product is expected to open up new markets for solar-powered lighting in Asia, Africa, South America, Australia and Europe.
The combo charge controller is also able to boost the output of solar streetlights to 24,000 lumens and allows for wireless remote monitoring.
The new technology – set to be launched at this week’s postponed Light + Building exhibition in Germany – will be integrated into all the solar lighting products Signify is launching this year.
The solar panels charge the batteries during the day and the stored energy powers the LEDs at night.
If the batteries run out of power, the LEDs are powered with energy drawn from the power grid.
Hybrid solar systems only need a solar panel and battery capacity of one day as grid power is available during cloudy days or in wintertime, whereas off-grid solar lighting systems typically need up to five days of panel and battery capacity.
This makes solar lighting now a feasible solution in areas with seasonal sunshine.
The new generation of the combo charge controller can drive luminaires from 5,000 to 24,000 lumens.
This allows them to target a wider range of applications from pedestrian paths to main city roads.
It is also possible to service a wider range of autonomy days, which represents the number of days that energy is stored in the battery.
The integrated LED driver enables a system efficacy of up to 170 lumens/Watt from 140 lumens/Watt, which Signify says is the highest in the industry.