San Diego, California and Jacksonville, Florida will soon begin a pilot program to examine the effectiveness of an intelligent city LED-based street lighting solution from GE. The GE solution that the cities are testing employs sensors, controls, wireless transmitters, and microprocessors to optimize operations and reduce costs beyond just changing the streetlights.
GE contends that its software platform, which is driven by Predix*, connects machines, data and people to improve performance management of assets such as street lights. Furthermore, GE says that its intelligent-cities enabling technology will provide a platform for the future development of intelligent applications that will make city services such as street lighting more efficient and less costly to operate.
“This solution truly presents endless possibilities for cities to learn, connect and improve both their operations and everyday life for their citizens,” said Maryrose Sylvester, president and CEO of GE Lighting. “In the pilots with San Diego and Jacksonville, we will be working with the cities to analyze data trends and determine where the solution holds the most value and how it will ultimately be used.”
GE asserts that the potential opportunities for using never-before-available real-time data are truly endless. According to GE, one potential application would use streetlights integrated with a combination of sensors and wireless transceivers to direct drivers to available parking spaces.
The same streetlight could sense and provide warnings through an integrated public address speaker concealed in the light post in the event of a hurricane or other event. In another scenario, microprocessors and other sensors could coordinate to give emergency responders real-time views of an area as they respond to a 9-1-1 call before they even arrive on the scene.
Jacksonville, the city with the largest area in the continental U.S., will test the GE solution during the summer of 2015. “Jacksonville is excited to be on the front lines with this pilot project, using new technology to increase efficiency and drive innovation, at no cost to taxpayers,” said Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown. “This is another example of how public-private partnerships can drive innovation and provide a return on investment for our taxpayers. This technology has the potential to transform how our city solves problems by allowing us to use the power of data to drive outcomes that give us flexibility, efficiency and new, creative actions to enhance life in our city.”
Jacksonville will also pilot LightGrid™, GE’s wireless controls technology that GE designed to provide significant energy savings. LightGrid enables remote monitor and GPS mapping of streetlights to instantly deliver usage and performance data from street lights within specific locations.
The San Diego pilot program will take GE’s technology a step further, using its existing GE Smart LED streetlights with added sensor technology to focus on offering parking solutions in the city’s downtown areas.
San Diego Mayor Faulconer said, “San Diego has proven that intelligent infrastructure saves energy and taxpayer dollars. We believe that this collaboration will help us go further in creating truly intelligent infrastructure that helps us improve services to the public.”
In 2014, San Diego became the first city to widely use GE’sLightGrid™ streetlight management technology, deploying more than 3000 LED-based streetlights with GE’s LightGrid™ outdoor wireless controls. The technology saves the city more than $350,000 annually in energy and maintenance costs.