Public lighting and energy saving

Did you know that today in Italy more than 9,000,000 (nine million) light points are installed in systems of public lighting? A very important number, which belongs to the systems of public lighting the expense item which accounts for approximately 15% -20% of the electricity consumption of the entire LAP - Local Public Administration. The latter refers to Regions, Provinces (as long as there are) and Municipalities that consume a total of about 6.2 TW / year of electricity.

But the real problem ofpublic lighting in Italy it is that in 60% of cases low efficiency lighting technologies are used, such as mercury vapor lamps which have a luminous efficiency of about 50-60 lm / W compared to more modern technologies - such as high and low pressure sodium vapors and metal halides - which reach much higher efficiency values.

The inefficiency of the network of public lighting in Italy it determines an average per capita consumption forpublic lighting estimated at 100 kWh / year while the European average is about 50 kWk / year (half of it!). The technological backwardness of the network of public lighting in Italy it is also evident in the installed power per light point, which is about 30% higher than the average of European countries.

Looking at the other side of the coin, thepublic lighting represents one of the areas that are estimated to have the greatest potential for the diffusion of energy efficiency in the country in the coming years and it is no coincidence that - together with cogeneration - has recently recorded the largest volume of investments. In short, a lot of work to do, and this should mean liveliness on the market.

The work is also a lot because obtaining energy savings through the improvement of the network public lighting it means several things. First of all, a different and more modern lighting technology. Technically, replacing the mercury vapor technology with the high and low pressure sodium vapor technology could save 35% -50% of electricity for each light point. With the metal halide technology the savings would be at least 20% -30%.

But the savings in the network of public lighting it also depends on the design of the support and housing of the lamps of the light points. Optics optimized to improve the efficacy of the luminous flux can do a lot. Much also depends on the power supply of the light point. A programmable electronic ballast allows you to adjust the lighting level of a road according to traffic, saving energy.

Overall it is estimated that a public lighting 'Intelligent' - with efficient lamps, optimized supports and programmable power supplies - would lead to electricity savings of approximately 0.3 - 0.5 TWh each year. Something can already be seen and we talked about it. For Enel Sole's Archilede, the CityTouch remote control platform by Philips is another.

You can learn more about the technical part with the article on brilliance, aOther articles that might interest you are the following:

  • How to light up your home while saving money
  • Light pollution

Video: AEC talks about how its changed public lighting (October 2021).