In most cities in India, street lights are installed and maintained by municipalities. However, due to lack of resources, streetlights are seldom maintained efficiently. Streetlights are normally switched on and turned off at a pre-determined time, rather than climatic or seasonal conditions. Not surprisingly, it is common to see streetlights switched on even during the day in many cities in India, which leads to tremendous wastage of precious energy resources.
As streetlights consume a major percentage of electricity, any electricity saved can lead can lead to massive savings in energy as there are a huge number of streetlights in every city or village. An Indian startup, Balaji Renukumar Switchomat GenessysGmessys Smart Systems, has identified this massive opportunity, and has created a smart switch called Switchomat, that enables complete automation of switching streetlights on and off. Explaining the technology behind Switchomat, Balaji Renukumar, MD, Gmessys Smart Systems, states, “The basic idea behind Switchomat is to implement wireless communication technologies with software to enable switching devices on and off from a remote location automatically. For streetlights, we believe that there is huge potential to save anywhere between 15 to 62%.”
The solution consists of a 365-day timer pre-loaded with longitude/latitude coordinates, based on unique sunrise/sunset times for all days of any year. The company currently manages streetlight operation for over 70 ULBs in 10 Districts of Karnataka through its head office in Mysore and branch offices in Hubli, Chitradurga and representatives across the state. “Our customers have realized power savings in the range of 12% to 62.5% and the ROI is about 5 – 24 months,” claims Balaji Renukumar.