Many utility customers are struggling to pay their monthly bills as energy costs surge across the country. A 2022 report by the Bank of America revealed that approximately 20% of consumers have made a late payment or missed paying their utility bills. Additionally, businesses are seeing higher rate increases than households. Because commercial buildings require a greater number of lighting fixtures per square foot to meet building codes, it’s essential for businesses to look for energy-efficient alternatives to offset costs. One way to do this is through connected lighting solutions. It’s not surprising that LED lighting is becoming so popular. Smart lighting allows end users the ability to monitor energy consumption. This is why so much revenue is being invested in the development of energy-efficient lighting solutions. One of the newest technologies is connected SSL LED lighting, which is accessed over a PoE (Power over Ethernet) Network.
What is Connected SSL PoE LED lighting?
In contrast to incandescent or fluorescent lamps that use gas, plasma, or gas to create light, solid-state (SSL) PoE lighting is a type of lighting that uses organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs), light-emitting diodes (LED), or polymer light-emitting diodes (PLED) as an illumination source.
SSL has semiconductors that convert electricity to light. Unlike incandescent lighting, SSL creates visible light with less energy dissipation and reduced heat generation.
Solid-state lighting is often used in traffic lights, modern vehicle lights, train marker lights, street, and parking lot lights, as well as building exteriors. Significant advances in lighting quality and energy efficiency are a direct result of this new technology. SSL fixtures, for example, are replacing standard incandescent tungsten-halogen lamps in the entertainment industry.
SSL technology is proving to be a better business investment, particularly when the cost of power is soaring in some markets.
What is an SSL Bulb?
An SSL bulb is an LED luminaire that’s an absolute lightning component created for a specific application. SSL bulbs are more compact than the traditional “lamp” driven lighting system. This is due to the compactness of LEDs.
Pros of SSL Bulb
- Greater longevity and service life: the life expectancy of an SSL bulb is between 5-7 years. They are more resistant to physical damage and have a more solid and durable design than other bulbs. Moreover, the longer service life is attributed to SSL bulbs eliminating filament evaporation.
- Slightly more compact in size
- Disperses heat away from heat-sensitive components
- Energy efficiency: SSL bulbs consume less energy than traditional incandescent bulbs, resulting in lower energy bills.
- Environmentally friendly: SSL LED bulbs don’t have toxic materials that impact the environment.
- Greater resistance to shock and vibration: Solid-state lighting bulbs and devices have a small mass that offers excellent vibration and shock resistance.
- Fixed lenses and beam spread: You can’t change this in most cases.
- High purchase price: Purchasing an SSL bulb is more expensive than lamp-style fixtures.
- Fixed lumen output: In most cases, you can’t adjust the brightness of an SSL bulb.
- Difficulty adapting to changing spaces: This is due to the fixed lumen and beam spread.
- More waste in the landfills: If the LED fails, you have to replace the LED and the entire fixture.
How SSL technology stacks up against standard LED
Both standard LEDs and SSL LEDs are great energy-saving lighting options, especially in areas that consume more energy, like businesses and warehouses. However, there’s a thin line between the two lighting options.
LEDs mimic the shape and size of halogen and incandescent lamp counterparts. Therefore, you can use the same brass, copper, and steel lighting fixtures alongside LEDs at a fraction of the energy consumption.
They also come at lower costs and are more easily accessible than SSL LEDs. It’s easier to upgrade to an LED as they fit into existing features. You can easily upgrade to brighter versions with different colors or beam spreads. SSL LEDs have fixed beam spreads and lumen and, therefore, cannot be swapped to accommodate landscape changes.
With standard LED bulbs, you can “tweak” a lighting design without completely rewiring or replacing new light fixtures. You must replace the LED and the entire fixture when using SSL LED bulbs.
However, in terms of energy efficiency, both the standard LED bulbs and SSL LED bulbs are energy efficient.
SSL LED bulbs come in a slightly more compact design than standard LED bulbs.
Moreover, SSL LED bulbs have more longevity and service life than standard LED bulbs. Where a standard LED bulb only lasts for about 2-3 years, an SSL LED bulb has a life expectancy of between 6-7 years. This is because SSL LED bulbs disperse heat effectively, unlike standard LEDs. Moreover, standard LEDs are usually placed in fixtures susceptible to the elements, contributing to their reduced lifespan.
So, while a standard LED bulb might be cheaper than an SSL LED bulb, the latter is more durable and has an extended life service. However, your choice of SSL LED will depend on your budget, environment, and other factors.
PoE Aspects of SSL LED Lighting Installations
The power advantages of LEDs are back on center stage amid soaring electricity prices. This time, commercial users can now tie luminaires to the internet and maximize the already outstanding energy saving-savings of standard LEDs.
Here’s what Eric Rondolat, Signify’s CEO, had to say about connected energy-efficient solutions:
“We believe that with connected lighting on the professional side and all the green switch moves that are happening around the world… there is potential, and we see that potential being very concrete.”
So, are people moving away from AC/DC technology to embrace PoE? In a survey by LEDs Magazine, about 33% of participants admitted to using PoE to power luminaires. Moreover, nearly a third of the respondents were confident that PoE would replace legacy AC/DC technology as a power supply or driver technology.
PoE can distribute DC power and transmit data via a less expensive category (CAT)5/CAT6A Ethernet cable instead of the conventional AC grid. You only need a single Cat5e, Cat6, or Cat6 cable to send power and data to connected SSL LED lighting fixtures. You can also use an extender to widen the range for remote locations.
The SSL industry must make informed decisions on intelligent systems and how to integrate them across multiple platforms like PoE.
Connected SSL LED is a more energy-efficient solution and the best alternative to standard LED bulbs. It has a greater longevity and service life of about 6-7 years. With the PoE feature in play, commercial industries will benefit more from connected SSL LED lighting.
Give us a call if you’re looking for PoE products that sync with changing industry standards and innovations. Versa Technology is also a quality, cost-effective, and industry-efficient IT equipment provider.