Streetlights leave a huge carbon footprint. One potential solution is to treat them more like houselights: shut them off when we're not around.
Tvilight, a smart streetlight project from Dutch designer Chintan Shah, does that by using motion-detecting sensors. Plug them on to new or existing streetlights, and they can detect when a vehicle or pedestrian is heading through, then light up to show the way. The lamps also capture speed, so they can anticipate when someone will reach the next light, and change brightness based on weather conditions. When nobody is in the area, the streetlights power down, working at a dim glow to conserve energy.
The project is already in use in Ireland, and although we've seen automated streetlights before, the weather- and speed-prediction tools seem to put these a step ahead. (Plus there's actually a video of this model in action.) Shah is also working with designer Daan Roosegaarde on the project, so hopefully we'll see Roosegaarde's smart-highways project in action soon, too.
Do street lights really have that much of an avoidable carbon footprint? I thought they were mainly powered by base generation capacity that can't be turned off, like nuclear.
Of course if electric vehicles become widespread we'd have something better to do with that base capacity.
Great idea. Imagine, a woman walking down the street coming home late at night from work and the lights turn on just in front of her and just behind her. She will never see the attacker waiting motionless just outside the circle of light until it is too late. Great idea guys.
I can only see this working with LED since vapor and fluorescent lights take time to turn on and off. And if its LED already then I doubt turning them on and off will make a huge difference, especially since the circuits that detect motion and turn the light on and off probably use as much energy as the lights do when they're on anyways.
In case of a crash, does the lamp stay on or does it leave the site pitch black for the next coming vehicle?
gotta agree with rc54, this was also 1 of my concerns.
also, wouldnt it be really annoying late at night and someone is walking home from an evening shift.
- you're all snuggled into bed, nice and dark, then on comes the street lamps. get out of bed, close the blinds/curtains. go back to sleep.
- lights come on again, faint glow of lights come through edges of the curtain or through the gaps in the blinds. wake up again, put on a sleep mask. drift off to sleep.
- awoken again by neighbor's dog barking at the blinking lights :s , put in ear plugs, go back to your slumber.
- alarm clock goes off an hour later. you sleep through the alarm, because you can't hear the alarm and cannot detect the sunlight shining in.
- eventually wake up, 2 hrs late for work.
- boss gives you [expletive deleted] for being late.
- go home, climb lamp pole, tear off motion sensor
- get arrested for mischief ... i'll stop writing as it only gets worse from there.
I wish somebody would do this with the stupid streetlights built behind businesses which stay lit all night to protect against varmits. They should all be connected to motion sensors! What a waste. And hard to sleep which my house is next to two of them and they put out more light than a full moon by a factor of 10! Ridiculous.
Random Factor? Why not close the blinds BEFORE you go to bed silly?
Lol - good point.
Really awesome video,, I wish if such street light would be there on every area then how great it would be,,