Bright ideas in physics are changing the way we light up our world.
Safer streets and sustainable power are just a few ways that smarter lighting could change our urban environment.
Physics expert and researcher at Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Dr Gillian Isoardi, is illuminating the possibilities of specialised LED lighting that is high quality and energy efficient. Applications range from improving public lighting to assisting vision and movement for people in aged-care facilities.
In early 2016, Gillian completed a 12-month trial of LED street lighting in Queensland. The physics project showcased advantages of switching to LED lights for roads and public areas, to make street lighting brighter and cut power costs.
New, high-tech streetlights collect and communicate essential data. Some will even have add-ons like inbuilt CCTV to boost public safety, and ‘push to talk’ emergency systems for quick contact to ambulance, police or firefighting services.
“Lighting is something that impacts everyone in a really fundamental way,” Gillian says. “When it all works well it really maximises our comfort, health, wellbeing and safety.”
– Karen Keast