Luca Carraro was born in Vigevano, Italy, in 1991. During his studies, he takes a Bachelor Degree in 2013 in Electronics and Telecommunications Engineering, followed by a Master Degree in Electronics Engineering, with a Photonics qualification, in 2015; both at the University of Pavia. He is now enrolled in a PhD School in Electronics, Computer Science and Electrical Engineering at the University of Pavia, working on a EU H2020 Project named LUMENTILE since 2015, where he purses the research in the photonic field and becomes assistant project manager in 2016.
LUMENTILE EU Project – Integration of SSL into Ceramic Tiles: A New Product for Smart-City Applications
Recent advancements in technology and demand for integration of new features in everyday-use objects are pushing electronic and photonic components to become embedded in devices that were originally born to be passive elements, thus greatly improving their usage possibilities. Internet of Things, smart wearable gadgets and home automation are the most representative examples of this trend. LUMENTILE (LUMinous ElectroNic TILE) is a project funded by the European Union within the H2020 framework, which scope is to design and realize a new product: an electronic luminous tile. The LUMENTILE products appear as a common tile when switched off; once it is turned on it lights up, changes colour, and interacts with the user.
Applications are countless: the LUMENTILE can be used as a stand-alone device, exploiting the white light for lighting application or, with RGB LEDs, the colour changing feature reveals perfect for a design element, where the colour variation of the object is highly desired. Nevertheless, the most interesting way to use LUMENTILE is to assemble a system of multiple devices and connect one to the others, creating a smart network of tile. This network can create an intelligent luminous floor, if LUMENTILE is installed as a floor-cover, on which luminous paths guiding people can be drawn; or, if installed on an external façade, the tiles can change the aspect of the building onto which the system is applied, also making it invisible when the background behind the building is displayed. Each LUMENTILE embeds RGB LEDs with suitable current drivers; presence / pressure sensors and a microcontroller that is in charge of managing the operations of a single tile and also of communicating with the neighbour tiles
The electronic circuit layout is designed to optimize the electrical-to-lighting efficiency, heat management and volume occupation. The smart network realized by the connected tiles requires the development of an unique communication protocol and an auto-configuration algorithm. Since the final product is intended for both indoor and outdoor installations, studies on materials and their integration has been carried out, with the goal of achieving a high ruggedness and high protection level. Design strategies, together with the use of frontier technologies and integration procedures will be presented and discussed with future developments.