Sustainable streetlight switches on when it sees you coming
Engineers in Las Vegas, Nevada, are testing a new system to illuminate the streets of the city: solar-powered streetlights that can switch themselves on and off when people pass nearby. The aim of this invention is to reduce both pollution and electricity costs.
Located in the middle of the desert, Las Vegas enjoys high levels of sunshine throughout the year, making the city an ideal place for solar energy use. For this reason, the company EnGoPlanet installed four eco-friendly streetlamps on a busy square in the city.
The system is simple. A battery is connected to rounded solar panels above the streetlights that store the energy to illuminate the square. The battery is also connected to kinetic tiles built into the pavement. When a pedestrian walks on the slabs, the energy produced by the weight of their movement is harnessed. Thanks to small generators, each step generates 4 to 8 watts, depending on the pressure exerted. If the system proves effective, it will be extended to other major American cities. engoplanet.com
EnGoPlanet’s solar-powered streetlights switch themselves on