Zhaga Connectivity Interfaces for Smart Cities and Smart Buildings
Zhaga is an open, global, industry consortium that aims to simplify the design and manufacturing of LED luminaires to accelerate the adoption of smart LED lighting solutions. It achieves its aim by standardizing the interfaces of components of LED luminaires, including LED light engines, LED modules, LED arrays, holders, electronic control gear (LED drivers) and sensor and connectivity modules.
One of the latest interface types pioneered by Zhaga is the connectivity interface between the luminaire and its driver to an external sensor or connectivity module. This connectivity interface may have a mechanical aspect, to position the module on the luminaire, a power aspect, to power the module, and a control aspect, to control the luminaire from the module and to get status data from the luminaire. In its most complete form, the interface describes all these aspects and allows for an eco-system of sensor and connectivity modules that interoperate with an eco-system of luminaires.
It is of great advantage, to have this interface as a standard; an installed base of luminaire equipped with the interface stimulates the development of a wide range of modules for a variety of applications, which in turn adds value to the luminaire, and drives an even greater installed base. It is very difficult to reach the critical mass, required to kick start this flying wheel, when the industry employs multiple competing and proprietary interfaces.
This interface allows for a modular luminaire design and relieves the luminaire manufacturer from the complexities of the digital world; module development can be easily outsourced. The interface also protects the value of the long-lived luminaire design against the fast development cycles that are characteristic of the digital world. As an additional benefit, the interface provides options for late stage configuration and in-field upgrades.
Zhaga has finalized with Book 18 a new specification that defines the mechanical aspects of the connectivity interface for outdoor LED fixtures and 24V modules. The specification demonstrates Zhaga’s priority focus to support the merger of IoT and lighting technologies and secures a central place for lighting in the smart city.
This specification marks the first step in a new direction for Zhaga that will also enable similar capabilities for future-proofed indoor luminaires for smart buildings. There are many uses supported by the introduction of a standard for smart and serviceable indoor luminaires which include, the ability to save energy through occupancy sensing and timings, ambient light level detection, wireless commissioning, lux level management, asset management via people tracking, secure local wireless data networks and lighting control and programming drivers. These benefits will be well received in public environments such as retail and hospitality application areas.
In the report and paper, we will first illustrate phase 2 of the connectivity interface for outdoor luminaires, where Zhaga will complement the specification with power and control aspects. We will also inform on progress in specifying the connectivity interface for indoor luminaires.