From light bulbs to connected lighting systems: How Philips Lighting is revolutionising the lighting industry
By Attila Danko, Development Engineer, Philips Lighting, Tamasi, Hungary
In the course of the last few years, Philips Lighting has become the global leader in futuristic lighting products, systems and solutions for every conceivable environment. These innovative solutions enhance people’s lives with light everywhere that lighting is important, indoors and outdoors: at home, in offices and factories, schools and playgrounds, theatres and shops. The company’s Hungarian manufacturing site in Tamasi is rapidly expanding as the source in EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa) of physical products and connected systems for a huge variety of lighting projects. Systems that can change people’s daily experience in effective, safer, and life-enhancing ways.
The fact is, light is fundamental to life. Philips Lighting delivers energy-efficient LED lighting solutions that improve people’s well-being and productivity, developing systems that are powered by connected infrastructures and enabled by IoT technology.
At the edge of the future
One example of the inspiring impact of Philips Lighting’s ground-breaking approach to lighting projects is The Edge, a multi-tenant office building in Amsterdam’s thriving Zuidas business district. The connected lighting system in the 15-floor, 40,000-square meter building uses around 6,500 connected LED luminaires, integrated sensors, lighting management software and Power-over-Ethernet (PoE) technology. Low power consumption enabled by LED lighting combined with PoE cables sending both power and data to the luminaires meant lower installation and construction costs, since no separate power cabling was needed.
The result was built-in energy savings for The Edge, right from the beginning. “We see our office as raising the bar in terms of data analysis, delivering completely new insights into office space usage,” says Erik Ubels, CIO of Deloitte. “It shows how we can reduce CO2 emissions from buildings and create a more sustainable world.”
The system delivered by Philips Lighting allows employees to personalise lighting and temperatures at their workspaces using a specially-designed smartphone app. The connected luminaires share operations data using Envision lighting management software, allowing facility managers to analyse energy consumption patterns. Integrated sensors provide anonymous data on room occupancy, temperature and humidity. Building managers then use this data to maximise energy efficiency through the precise delivery of heating, cooling, and cleaning resources.
Employees at the Deloitte offices appreciate the flexibility and increased comfort the system can provide, even in open-plan offices. They can control the lighting at their desks at will, and adjust lighting and temperature in meeting rooms to suit individual preferences.
The connected lighting system at The Edge was the first, fully-realised system of its kind in the world, and is just one example of how Philips Lighting is leading the way in supporting sustainable practices and human-centric working environments.
Smart solutions = Integrating light and data
The basis of connected lighting systems is the integration of uniquely identified luminaires into the IT network of a building, monument, or entire city. Fitted with sensors, each luminaire is a source of information about occupancy, activity patterns, temperature, humidity, and daylight levels. Wireless communication incorporated in the lighting systems allows the delivery of location-based services and information through mobile apps. Lighting management software then allows operators to monitor and manage lighting systems in real time, such as the CityTouch system for public outdoor spaces.
“The landscape in lighting is changing radically – and Philips Lighting is the game changer! Where there is light, there are potential data points, each one unique, secure, contactable and connectable. Big Data analytics allow the development of apps for anything you want. We believe we can shape many new value spaces.”
Sanjeev Kumar, R&D Manager, Mobile & Big Data Analytics
A special team of engineers at Philips Lighting’s Hungarian site develops and creates systems to meet widely varying needs. The LED luminaires can be customised for specific uses in retail outlets, offices, homes, theatres and entertainment centers, horticultural installations, schools, sports facilities and municipal installations. In fact, anywhere that customers want to achieve the cost-efficiency and flexibility provided by LED lighting. This year, Tamasi has also added a Fast Track Development Centre for the design and manufacture of any lighting system requested by customers, entirely from scratch.
Given the unusual degree of flexibility, innovation, energy and cost-saving efficiency provided by connected lighting, students at universities around the world are hugely interested in extending the boundaries of possible applications.
Collaboration between Philips Lighting and a team of top students at the University of Eindhoven identified three potential applications in healthcare, involving indoor drones for hospitals to deliver data to precise locations using LED lighting systems. The team has successfully demonstrated a game using light systems connected with drones to entertain young patients in children’s wards. They foresee other practical applications for hospital logistics and the monitoring of patients.
LED lighting goes beyond illumination, only because of the low temperature of luminaires compared to conventional lighting, but also their durability and flexibility. Since the lower wattage of LED fixtures gives a higher lumen output than incandescent lamps, they save energy and are also brighter. As the University of Eindhoven developments (see above) suggest, the full potential for imaginative applications has by no means yet been fully explored.
An illuminated future
Fast-paced innovation and customer-specific delivery of effective lighting systems is only possible in a radically different working environment, where ambitious and highly-motivated people engage in developing ever-new applications. In the Tamasi factory and Budapest offices of Philips Lighting, talented engineers, project managers and supply chain specialists develop new solutions responding to the real needs of customers.
The company culture within Philips Lighting is one of friendly openness and flexibility. It’s a dynamic, challenging environment, where the focus is on cooperative entrepreneurship where engineers can drive their own careers, continually learning and growing as individuals. Few employers of global stature offer such a unique balance of personal satisfaction and professional growth potential, in the exciting context of what is coming to be seen as ‘The Next Big Thing’ in today’s IoT world. Philips Lighting is not only revolutionary within the lighting industry, but in the daily life of many people worldwide.
Want to know more about career opportunities in today’s revolutionary lighting industry?
Discover more at www.philips.com/careershungary