Volta Technology combines hardware and software solutions (communications and cloud technology) with solar and kinetic energy technology to design and power innovative, reliable, intelligent, and high performance LIGHTINUS street lights and charging stations. Our off-the-grid system is based on wireless communication technology that provides real-time 24/7 remote control, monitoring and management of our LIGHTINUS renewable energy products. Powered by the sun and footsteps, the LIGHTINUS line can achieve groundbreaking levels of reliability and performance while diminishing installation, maintenance and electricity costs. Digital smart technology ensures clients that all aspects of the system and the load are being monitored anytime, anywhere using online browser via PC, tablet or smartphone.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
It takes from 4 to 8 weeks to implement a pilot project depending on the number of units ordered and the specified location of the project. During each phase of the project we offer on-site and off-site full technical support. We are providing assistance with all technical issues, advice on static and wind reports together with lighting configuration for each specific installation in question. We are working closely with many specialized subcontractors in each country delivering turnkey solutions for our customers.
Our LIGHTINUS RMS is made to fit almost every off-the-grid system on the market. It is important to note that our off-the-grid controller supports both solar and wind energy as well as grid connection. We can provide a back-up grid connection system that works on renewable energy and is simultaneously connected on the grid in case of energy depletion. RMS is designed to manage all such models.
RMS is a versatile tool fit for many smart-off-the grid applications. Besides our street lights, RMS provides the same services and features for our LIGHTINUS CityHub and Compact charging stations. In addition, we can also implement RMS into other off-the-grid systems since our controllers can be used to monitor and manage other applications such as security systems, mobile power, signage and other.
If we take into account only the product price, the initial investment into smart off-the-grid street lights is usually two times higher compared to traditional street lights. Over a 10 year period however, traditional street lights installation and electricity cost per unit ranges from 7,000-8,000 $ while our LIGHTINUS street light cost is 3,500-5,000 $ over the same period of time.
Customers are usually not aware of the following important points:
- Traditional street lights require cabling and trenching to connect to grid lines creating enormous additional costs, whereas smart off-the-grid street lights are much simpler – plug in and play solution. To make a comparison: one feet of cabling and trenching costs 50$. Depending on the location of the transformer, you would need at least 20 feet of cabling and trenching. These operations create additional cost of 1000$ which offsets the higher initial price of smart off-the-grid lighting systems just by looking at the installation costs.
- LED fixture versus traditional fixture (HID, Sodium). We use 30W to 80W LED fixtures compared to 200W – 400W traditional fixtures. The LED lights deliver brighter light (high CRI from 80 – 90) for less energy used. This contributes to lower energy consumption which enables our customers to obtain free renewable energy with expected ROI per unit in 3 years.
- LED fixtures are less prone to failures with an average number of 50,000 working hours, whereas traditional street lights range from 5,000 to 8,000 working hours. Accordingly, traditional street lights cause much more frequent maintenance problems and generate much higher operational costs over their lifetime.
- Our remote management system (RMS) generates additional energy savings by prolonging the life cycle of our LIGHTINUS off-the grid system:
- Our RMS provides information on the exact temperature of the solar battery, making it possible to adjust the charging current of each battery in real-time – increasing the lifespan of the system by more than 50%. This means that our clients don’t have to change the solar batteries after 5 years (usually they last up to 5 years and the typical cost of a new set of batteries is 600 $ per pole), instead they will be functional for more than 10 years.
- Having installed motion sensors on each pole with dimming functionality, our customers will have light on demand in crucial periods while saving energy during times when full light performance is not truly needed. For instance, the city of Barcelona saved 2-3 billion € in electricity by implementing motion sensors on part of the street light network in the city. In addition, applying the motion sensor and dimming functionality increases further the duration of LED lights, which translates into high performance that exceeds their average lifespan of 50.000 hours.
- By using RMS, our customers can monitor in real-time the status of each street light through a dedicated system of automatic alerts and notifications (faults and malfunctioned units). In case of a failure, our clients will know exactly which pole is malfunctioning. This feature will in turn decrease their transportation costs, human resources utilization and time needed to physically check each pole, order and change parts on-site.
- Our LIGHTINUS premium package includes direct on-site services and monitoring of your street lights by our dedicated team. Due to our sophisticated software and technical partner network in each country, we are able to cut down the costs of your monitoring and maintenance departments in exchange for affordable monthly fee. Through our RMS we are able to monitor your entire network of street lights and change the way street light business has been conducted so far.
Our LIGHTINUS system generates energy savings immediately after installation. These cost savings can be calculated daily, monthly and annually in comparison to traditional grid systems. For instance, traditional on grid street lights consume 1226 kWh per year costing 700 $ per unit. Without smart technology that enables remote management of the lighting system, detection of maintenance problems takes too much resources and operational costs. In addition, the mere installation of traditional street lights requires trenching and cabling which incurs high costs as well. Our LIGHTINUS smart street light solves all these problems since installation cost is much lower (plug in and play solution), maintenance cost is reduced by 80% through remote management and monitoring of maintenance and performance issues while the energy savings are 100% based on renewable energy utilization.
Yes, we are also offering smart solar street lights with backup power from grid connection through a specially designed solar controller with a built-in hybrid function, which is also synchronized with our cloud based RMS services. We are working closely with a number of customers who have mission critical lighting demands that require 24/7 working hours.
Our RMS software and service can be applied to on grid street lights, but retrofitting of the existing poles into smart off-the-grid or hybrid solutions would be required. The following adaptations would be needed:
- Changing traditional HID or sodium lamps with LED fixtures–the mounting holes are the same, no further adaptation is needed.
- Installing the solar panel on top of the pole – we provide different mounting brackets for a number of different poles to enable easier switch to smart off-the-grid system.
- Installing electrical box with batteries. There are 3 options:
- Place the box in the bench – if the customer orders bench as a feature of our LIGHTINUS off-the-grid smart street light.
- Undershaft – the batteries and electrical box are buried beneath the pole.
- Place the electrical box on the pole – location is determined based on customer preferences.
Our technical department will work closely with you to determine if the existing pole is able to withstand retrofitting elements (solar panels and new LED fixture) and other mechanical and technical requirements such as exposure to atmospheric conditions (wind and snow).
If you already have off-the-grid system in place and would like to start using our RMS software service, the following steps are required:
- Our technical department will have to cross-check the electrical specifications of your system in order to confirm that our smart solar controller is a suitable solution.
- The installation procedure is explained in a simple four step user manual. It is important to note that our solar controller is simple to use, does not require electrical skills for installation and has a user friendly software application (that can be downloaded via your smartphone) to verify if the installation has been completed successfully.
If the system specifications are compatible, there will be no problems in installing our controllers and communication devices on your existing infrastructure of lighting fixtures and distribution cabinets.
There are no load limitations in terms of number of units that our RMS software can manage. The software is designed with future scalability in mind. The most important project activity to ensure smooth operation of RMS is to adapt the number of gateway units per group of poles for stable and reliable wireless mesh network.
CityHub is perfect for installation at busy public areas such as bus stations, parks, city malls, airports, universities and public squares. Powered by solar and kinetic energy, CityHub adds value to cities’ sustainability goals and public services by providing free energy to pedestrians through smart device charging services, Wi-Fi and integrated SOS communication feature while enabling the city to use the station’s panels as informational/marketing platform for faster ROI.
- First step (duration: 1 day) – The installation team builds a concrete foundation, based on the predefined construction documentation, on the specific location determined by the customer. The foundation is left to undergo drying in the next 5 days.
- Second step (duration: 1 day) – After the concrete foundation is ready for further treatment, our detailed and simplified User Manual provides all the instructions for the integration of all CityHub components, including electrical, technical and mechanical procedures to complete the installation process.
There is a large array of sensors and applications that can be mounted on our LIGHTINUS smart street light network or the CityHub and Compact charging stations. Our data analytics system/IoT open data platform is scalable enabling cities/infrastructure operators to add different sensors such as air quality monitoring (temperature, CO2 levels, humidity), traffic monitoring, real-time energy demand response, smart water metering, city-wide intelligent parking, security cameras, communication antennas, pollution sensors, noise detectors or traffic density sensors are just a few examples. We can tailor the system to address your particular needs. These smart sensors supported by our cloud platform are adaptable for all LIGHTINUS products, as well as any other off-the-grid or on grid systems.
Every client, whether a city, public or commercial entity has unique requirements. It is difficult to estimate a total deployment cost without detailed information and specifics related to your project. The quickest way to find out the estimated implementation costs is to fill in our forms in the contact section of our website and our team will send you all the needed details as soon as possible.
The amount of money you will be able to save with our RMS software service is a question that you have the answer for. Whatever the current expenses of your existing system maintenance, monitoring and technical services, substitute them with a an affordable monthly fee you would be paying us to do the job for you. The reason we are able to cut down your costs is in our software and automation processes, allowing us to maintain, monitor and repair a large number of street lights without having costs associated with human resources and on-site checks.
The Compact portable charging station is an interactive, consumer engaging communication tool intended for outdoor promotional events. Powered by the sun and visitors’ footsteps, each unit can serve as a mobile charger with LED lights in emergency situations. We can adapt/modify Compact technical specifications for indoors, but we recommend to use this unique off-the-grid product for outdoor activities to attract people through innovative and interactive green energy functions.
Each LIGHTINUS street light unit represents an important part of the hardware of our off-the-grid system that combines all other functionalities. The smart technology components and the RMS cloud software create a unique blend of features that make our street lights network highly efficient and data driven.
The data from each off-the-grid controller is automatically collected and sent to the RMS central cloud system. All RMS services are accessible from any Internet-connected device utilizing a browser. We design our LIGHTINUS system by integrating various technologies, from renowned IT vendors, with a focus on simplicity and easy implementation. Our flexible communications options eliminate the complexity of setting up and using a very expensive cost cellular service. Unlike other products, our solar controller comes with built-in communications. There are three communications options to choose from depending on the customer’s off-the-grid system requirements and the size of the street light network (number of units installed). We can determine the best option for your project or a combination of several options customized to address your needs:
- Cellular: We provide an integrated cellular service, with each system (product) directly communicating with the RMS cloud. Each controller has a prebuilt sim card covering 170 countries globally to communicate wirelessly via GSM to our cloud.
- Zigbee/Mesh with Cellular: With this option, each system sends data to a gateway device using built-in Zigbee communications. The gateway is installed within one of the poles and it communicates to the RMS cloud using the cellular network. Each controller has a Mesh chip which allows the controllers to communicate together in a cluster to a single cellular gateway. The cellular gateway communicates all of the performance data for the poles in the cluster and sends them directly to the cloud making them accessible from anywhere via our RMS application.
- Zigbee/Mesh with Ethernet: With this option, each system sends data to a gateway device using built-in Zigbee communications. The gateway is installed at the client facility and is connected via Ethernet to a corporate network which then sends the data to the RMS cloud over the Internet. Each controller has a Mesh chip which allows the controllers to communicate together in a cluster to a single Ethernet gateway. The Ethernet gateway, located in a building that has Ethernet capability, communicates all of the performance data for the poles in the cluster, eliminating cellular charges.
In a Zigbee network, we highly recommend that the maximum distance between poles or the gateway is 300m.
Using our advanced communication technology and RMS monitoring packages, our goal is to take care of all maintenance, communication, performance and technical issues of your off-the-grid/ on the grid LED lighting systems on a 24/7 basis.
Our solar batteries are produced by reliable international manufacturers. It is well known in the solar industry that a solar battery has certain storage capacity for accumulating energy that runs the application installed on the off-the-grid system. Without smart technology, on average a solar battery can store enough energy for the system to operate up to seven days without any sun exposure. We can provide two reliable solutions to achieve absolute autonomy and have no energy depletion periods:
- Our RMS software provides real-time monitoring, control and proactive maintenance of the lighting system over the Internet from any PC, tablet or smartphone. With a built-in sophisticated weather predictability feature and dimming functionality in RMS as well as motion sensors, we deliver unmatched reliability and performance of the LIGHTINUS street lights network. These features can optimize light performance in a number of ways and take into account bad weather to save energy and run the system efficiently while prolonging energy reserves and battery power. Since we are able to proactively monitor the system with the help of our software and all its features, we have succeeded in having absolute autonomy of the LIGHTINUS street lights – being functional 365 days throughout the year.
- To address a variety of client needs for large installations of street lights that cannot be powered by solar energy alone (including locations which are not much exposed to sun – shading, extreme climate), we also offer a specially designed solar controller with back up grid power. This device controls the amount of power that is pulled from the electric grid to ensure that grid power is only drawn when needed and that maximum solar energy is first obtained. With both solar and grid available to charge batteries, the grid ensures there is enough power even when there is not enough sun.
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