Engineer with tablet and IoT icon graphics superimposed

How are forward-thinking businesses optimizing their operations and cutting costs, while increasing sustainability? The answer for many is intelligent lighting systems running on the Internet of Things (IoT).

By now, you have likely heard of the IoT movement. Beyond the consumer IoT products that have created a massive network of smart home functionality is the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), which has quietly boosted the operational efficiency of industrial and commercial facilities around the globe. Specifically, intelligent lighting products are set to become more common in factories, warehouses, commercial spaces, and offices everywhere. Navigant Research reports the global market revenue for IIoT lighting is expected to grow from $651.1 million in 2017 to $4.5 billion in 2026 thanks to wide implementation of these systems.

What is it that makes intelligent lighting systems so special?

 1. Measurable Energy Savings and ROI

One of the biggest hurdles to investing in IIoT solutions is the infrastructure cost, and difficult-to-define ROI. Lighting provides an immediate and quantifiable return in the form of documented energy savings. Through a combination of advanced controls such as task tuning and daylight harvesting, an intelligent LED lighting system can drive lighting-related energy savings of up to 90%. Over time, these savings can more than justify the switch from traditional lighting, or basic LEDs, to intelligent LED lighting.

The benefits aren’t limited to businesses that implement an entirely new lighting system. Adaptable lighting controls (such as Digital Light Agents) can easily be installed on any LED light, and make lighting-based intelligence more accessible and affordable.

2. Smart Lighting Can Be Controlled From the Palm of Your Hand

Smart LED fixtures feature unique sensors, which enable the light to power on and off based on sensor-sourced data such as room occupancy, traffic patterns, and more. Cloud-based digital applications communicate directly with the sensors on the LED to coordinate lighting strategies, or adjust light output based on natural light sources.

This connected technology allows facility managers to control every aspect of a building’s lighting system from their laptop, or even from a mobile device hundreds of miles away. Additionally, energy usage software and dashboards record, display, and report on lighting patterns that help users identify anomalies and inefficiencies that signal opportunities to improve business operations and employee productivity and safety.

3. Achievable Sustainability Initiatives More Easily

As intelligent lighting systems can be customized, and include the ability for both dynamic and remote lighting management, they can play an important role in helping organizations achieve sustainability goals — whether those goals are self-identified or, as in the case of a growing number of states such as California (where Title 24 may require features such as occupancy sensors and functionality such as daylight harvesting), building efficiency standards required by law.

4. Intelligent Lighting Leads to Other Smart Building Applications

Intelligent lights and controls are merely the start of creating a data-driven enterprise that runs more efficiently while cutting costs. Because intelligent lights are fully connected, overhead and evenly spaced throughout the building, they are an ideal foundation for smart sensors related to new, IoT-based building management applications. Environmental monitoring, non-lighting energy controls, security alerts and space utilization all can be introduced through and integrated into smart lighting systems. All of these sensor-driven solutions are designed to lower overhead costs, keep inventory fresh, protect organizational assets and, perhaps most important, introduce a stream of new, data-driven insights that allow businesses to easily identify new opportunities for operational efficiencies. 

The smart building movement is poised for exponential growth in the next few years. By 2021, smart building device connections is set to be a $31.4 billion market. That will be an $8.5 billion increase from 2015.

When will you join the intelligent LED lighting and smart building movement?

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