Campus Street Light

I wanted to look to the technology of the future to design my street light for campus. I wanted to create a smart streetlight that provided information for the student. I have included a digital screen that can display university information and a campus map. The street lights can communicate with each other via the WiFi network to control the lighting levels.

I wanted to do something totally different with this design so I investigated the needs of students. As soon as you step on to the campus you notice that the majority of students have a mobile phone in their hand. This got me thinking about the short battery life of a smartphone and the constant need to re charge it. My street light design is powered remotely by the solar panels on campus what if i used this energy to create a phone charging point on my street light. There was an experiment in New York where they devised charging points using weather and tamper resistant USB cords and tips http://street-charge.com/station/. But I thought that it would be a great feature to add to a street light.

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Scientists unveil wind-powered lighting

Scientists have produced a wind-activated material that emits white light. The elastic-mechanoluminescent device features zinc sulphide microscopic particles, embedded in a polydimethylsiloxane elastomer, which produce warm, neutral or cool white light over a range of colour temperatures.

The team from Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology has used the material to create rods. When exposed to a stream of air, the rods bend and emit light from the phosphurs. The colour of the light can be altered by changing the proportion of the phosphors.

Mechanoluminescence is the emission of light due to a mechanical action on a material. As this action causes the material to break or fracture, it was thought that mechanoluminescence was not suitable for practical applications. However, the discovery of elastico-mechanoluminescent materials has challenged this thinking. These materials produce light under elastic deformation but they are not broken or destroyed by the force.

The scientists behind the report say harnessing wind-activated mechanoluminescent devices in practical displays or lighting systems could pave the way for new environmentally friendly lights, which reduce energy waste and promote sustainability.

However, one issue the team doesn’t appear to have tackled is what happens when natural winds stop blowing. The device might work perfectly on a blustery day, but is it lights off when the wind stops?

Unknown(2014)Scientists unveil wind-powered lighting[online]http://www.lighting.co.uk/8668404.article(accessed 15th August 2014)

Research Book

My research book arrived today from the printers. I must admit that blurb do a very professional job, I think the quality of the final book is fantastic. The paper is really thick and photographic quality. I have included a few photos of the contents of the book but I didn’t want to break in the spine so they are rather quite tight together. Its great to have all my research in book form, was fascinating to have a flick through all the research that I have done on this course so far.

LuminAID Solar-Powered Inflatable Light

I found this fascinating product online that is such a simple yet clever idea. Its called LuminAID and you Charge in sun for 6-7 hours for up to 16 hours of LED light. You then inflate it using the valve. The inflation diffuses light like a lantern and protects eyes from any glare from the LED light source. Then Illuminate with the power switch once for LOW and twice for HIGH. The product is water resistant and can float. The LuminAID has a LithiumPolymer Ion battery (similar to your cell phone) that was specifically chosen for its energy storage capacity and quality. The LuminAID can hold a full charge for over 4 months.

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UK Boroughs and Counties Vamp Up LED Streetlight Investments

Over the past week, rising streetlight costs have led to several UK counties announcements of overhauling inefficient streetlights with more energy efficient LED streetlights. The total number of streetlights to be retrofitted by two boroughs and one council is expected to reach 50,420.

The Poole Council for instance recently announced plans of spending £10 million (US $16.80 million) to replace 17,420 streetlights in a town in Dorset over a period of six years, according to a BBC report. The council expects the new streetlights, which will be turned on the whole night instead of being switched off between midnight to 6:00 Am in the initial proposal, will save £20 million in energy costs over a period of 30 years. To complete the project, the council has even approved a streetlight retrofit bank loan.

Other boroughs in UK also have plans of scaling up LED streetlight replacements. The Wokingham Borough Council announced the unanimous approval of investing £11.6 million in new streetlights to cut energy bills, according to a Getreading report. While the Poole Council reported energy bills having doubled over the last decade, Wokingham Borough Council authorities noted streetlight costs have amounted to £600,000 in 2013. An estimated 16,000 streelights will be retrofitted throughout the council, and the council claims at the end of 20 years, the new LED streetlights will be able to save the council £14 million.

Not to be left out, the Thurrock Council recently announced plans of taking a £ 6 million bank loan to overhaul 17,000 streetlights with LEDs, according to a Thurrock Gazette report.

Rising energy costs and LED streetlights lower maintenance costs were the common cited reasons behind UK city councils embrace of LED technology. Some cities in UK have chosen to switch off streetlights during certain periods in the night, such as Essex, but as Thurrock Council noted it is not really an option if night time street safety is to be taken into consideration.

Unknown(2014)UK Boroughs and Counties Vamp Up LED Streetlight Investments[Online]http://www.ledinside.com/news/2014/8/uk_burroughs_and_counties_vamp_up_led_streetlight_investments(Accessed 14th August 2014)

Street lights in Northern Ireland to be switched off due to budget cuts

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Budget cuts could force tens of thousands of street lights in Northern Ireland to be switched off this winter.

Roads minister Danny Kennedy issued the warning as his department faces a £15 million cut, leaving it unable to pay private contractors to repair broken street lamps.

Kennedy told BBC Northern Ireland: “This has the potential to result in tens of thousands of street lights being out across Northern Ireland over the winter period.”

Kennedy’s Department for Regional Development will use an in-house contractor in a bid to maintain road safety.

The budget cuts are part of a wider programme which will see Stormont ministerial departments reduce spending by £78 million.

A similar concern over budget cuts recently erupted in Derbyshire following a £775,000 reduction in its street lighting budget. Derbyshire County Council said it can only afford to maintain 12,000 street lights, but anticipates 18,000 may fail.

Unknown(2014)Street lights in Northern Ireland to be switched off due to budget cuts[Online]http://www.lighting.co.uk/8667032.article(Accessed 7th August 2014)