"Municipalities now have the power to create the perfect environment at any given time," said Ron Sege, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Echelon. "Imagine the improved public safety if all of the streetlights in an area were immediately whiter and brighter when a 911 call was responded to, but otherwise dimmer and more yellow at night for restful sleep. Cities need not compromise safety for comfort or vice versa. Our technology is paving the way for smart cities to improve quality of life, while still achieving energy efficiency and sustainability goals."American Medical Association vs. LED Benefits The American Medical Association issued a policy statement about the harmful effects of outdoor high-intensity, LED lighting on humans and the environment. The guidelines put forth a recommendation for communities to control blue-rich lighting to reduce glare and discomfort. The AMA also warns that the blue-rich LED lights can suppress melatonin, which can negatively impact human circadian rhythmicity causing poor sleep quality, among other health concerns. According to the guidelines, outdoor streetlighting should have a color temperature of no greater than 3000 Kelvin (K) at nighttime. On the flip side of the issue, lighting researchers and experts counsel that, if the lights are either too yellow or too dim, visibility and public safety may be compromised. The Department of Energy supports the use of LED streetlights because they consume approximately 50% less energy than the common high-pressure sodium and metal-halide lamps. They also last longer which has cost-saving appeal for many municipalities. Each side of the debate has valid points, forcing city managers to ultimately believe they must make a choice between health or public safety. It's Now Possible to Have All of the Benefits of LEDs Outdoors While many municipal leaders and sustainability managers may feel the pressure to make the right choice, Echelon has engineered a solution that doesn't force people to choose one set of LED streetlight benefits over another. Echelon is the first to give municipalities the power to adjust the white color and brightness level - as needed.
In a first-of-its-kind demonstration, the forward-thinking leaders of White Bear Lake were able to adjust both the light level and the white color range in its city park lighting. By being able to tune from warm white (2700 Kelvin) all the way to cool white (5500 Kelvin), city managers can modify outdoor lighting to enhance quality of life without compromising visibility or public safety. A warm white of 2700K was preferred for times with low activity, while higher color temperature of 4500K was deemed to provide better visibility for times with higher activity and during public events."There has been a lot of controversy in the industry regarding the color of light generated by outdoor lighting and the possible harmful effects it may cause to humans and the surrounding ecosystems. This issue forces agencies to select the preferred color temperature before installation of a lighting system," said Ken Taillon, Manager of Municipal Lighting Services, Short Elliott Hendrickson Inc., who led the project engineering. "With Echelon's innovative technology, agencies no longer have to choose the color temperature during the design process. Tuning the color of white light in conjunction with adjusting the brightness level provides opportunities we've never had before. Lighting systems can now respond to the dynamic needs associated with providing necessary public safety while rendering colors and light levels that are more appropriate for lighting the after-hour nighttime environment." Custom color tunable lamps, drivers and controls provide the capability to easily shift from cool white light to warm white light, offering endless options for smart cities. For example: 4000K and higher lighting is ideal for:
- Higher levels of activity
- High risk areas such as intersections, on/off ramps, parking lots and dark alleys
- Emergency scenes and first responders
- Commercial areas with signage
- Delicate nighttime illumination
- Historic and residential neighborhoods
- Natural environments such as forests, parks and sanctuaries
About Echelon CorporationFor 25 years Echelon (NASDAQ:ELON) has pioneered the development of open-standard networking platforms for connecting, monitoring and controlling devices in commercial and industrial applications. With more than 110 million devices installed worldwide, Echelon's proven, scalable solutions host a range of applications enabling customers to reduce energy and operational costs, improve safety and comfort, and create efficiencies through optimizing physical systems. Echelon is focusing today on two IoT (Internet of Things) market areas: Creating smart cities and smart enterprises through connected outdoor lighting systems, and enabling device makers to bring connected products to market faster via a range of IoT-optimized embedded systems. More information about Echelon can be found at www.echelon.com. Echelon, the Echelon logo, Lumewave by Echelon, LumInsight, and SmartServer are trademarks of Echelon Corporation that may be registered in the United States and other countries. Other product or service names mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners. This press release may contain statements relating to future plans, events or performance. Such statements may involve risks and uncertainties, the risk that Echelon's offerings by themselves or combined with other applications or offerings do not perform as designed or do not offer the expected benefits and savings; and other risks identified in Echelon's SEC filings. Actual results, events and performance may differ materially. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. Echelon undertakes no obligation to release publicly the result of any revisions to these forward-looking statements that may be made to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events.