Energy-Saving Streetlights Light Up Only When Needed
As a student, Dutch designer Chintan Shah asked himself why so many streetlights were on unnecessarily. He then set out to devise a more economical and environmentally friendly alternative.
What's the Latest Development?
While flying overseas, then-student Chintan Shah wondered why so many streetlamps lit streets that were empty at night. He then devised a system that uses wireless sensors to turn lights up only in the presence of a person, car or bike, and keeps lights dim the rest of the time. The result, called Tvilight, won a Delft University of Technology competition, and since then, it's been installed in five municipalities in the Netherlands and Ireland, with local governments in other countries expressing interest.
What's the Big Idea?
While doing research for the project, Shah learned that over 40 percent of European governments' energy bills went towards powering streetlights, and that they produced enough carbon dioxide emissions to power 20 million cars yearly. While the environmental and economic benefits of a system like Tvilight are obvious, he believes it could be adapted for other uses, such as alerting drivers of an ambulance's approach by flashing red light and giving them extra time to get out of the way. Dutch artist Daan Roosengaarde came up with some additional creative ideas: "Imagine I can write a piece of software, so when I take my girlfriend out for a walk, it does something special...you have this boulevard of interactive lights."
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com
Swipe right to make the connections that could change your career.
Swipe right. Match. Meet over coffee or set up a call.
No, we aren't talking about Tinder. Introducing Shapr, a free app that helps people with synergistic professional goals and skill sets easily meet and collaborate.
A completely unexpected discovery beneath the ice.
- Scientists find remains of a tardigrade and crustaceans in a deep, frozen Antarctic lake.
- The creatures' origin is unknown, and further study is ongoing.
- Biology speaks up about Antarctica's history.
Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com, explains his plan for success.
- Jeff Bezos had a clear vision for Amazon.com from the start.
- He was inspired by a statistic he learned while working at a hedge fund: In the '90s, web usage was growing at 2,300% a year.
- Bezos explains why books, in particular, make for a perfect item to sell on the internet.
It's one factor that can help explain the religiosity gap.
- Sociologists have long observed a gap between the religiosity of men and women.
- A recent study used data from several national surveys to compare religiosity, risk-taking preferences and demographic information among more than 20,000 American adolescents.
- The results suggest that risk-taking preferences might partly explain the gender differences in religiosity.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.