Global Lighting Challenge Has a Lofty Goal
Data at the Speed of Light
> THE GLOBAL LIGHTING CHALLENGE
(GLC) was launched in May 2015 as
a vehicle to help achieve the goal
of cumulative global sales of 10
billion high-efficiency, high-quality
and affordable advanced lighting
products, such as light-emitting diode
(LED) lamps. The GLC will showcase
the ways businesses, governments
and other leaders are taking action to
accelerate this transition.
Given that lighting accounts for 15
percent of global electricity consumption
and 5 percent of global greenhouse gas
emissions, expediting the transition
to energy-efficient lighting could be
one of the most significant short-term
initiatives to improve economic and global
conditions. By 2030, initiatives such as
this are projected to deploy 50 percent
more lighting globally, while consuming
50 percent less energy compared to
today. The GLC estimates that, if the goal
is achieved, $120 billion can be saved
globally in electricity bills.
The GLC provides a high-profile
global platform to recognize public- and
private-sector leaders that are driving the
global transition to efficient lighting. There
are four levels of membership:
• Participants are organizations that make
tangible and specific commitments to
be counted toward the 10-billion-lamp
goal. These can be lighting retailers,
building owners, other retailers,
governments, development banks, and
• Supporters are “market enablers” that
are critical to supporting the efforts of
participants and endorsers (discussed
below). Supporters include lighting
manufacturers, utilities, energy service
companies (ESCOs) and others.
• Endorsers are governments that affirm
and promote the GLC’s goal.
• Partners are organizations and
initiatives that provide support
for lighting policies and programs
that have agreed to promote and
be promoted through the GLC
platform. More specifically, these
are the organizations that are largely
responsible for contributing to the
initial concept, technical support,
launch and operation of the GLC.
As of December 2015, the GLC reports
that approximately 35. 5 million lamps
For more information, visit www.
> IN THE DIGITAL AGE, almost anything can be an enabled
device. As cell phones became portable computers and catalysts
for the expansion of Wi-Fi, lamps may be next.
Recently, Estonian startup Velmenni announced that it has
started testing commercial applications of Li-Fi, a super-fast
transmission of data through visible light. The product, Jugnu, is
an LED lamp that transmits data while it lights up a room.
According to CEO Deepak Solanki, Velmenni has been able
to transmit data over light in the real world at a speed of 1 gigabit
Li-Fi, also referred to as visible light communication (VLC),
offers advantages over Wi-Fi. In addition to higher speeds, it
is also theoretically more secure and more reliable as it is less
prone to interference from other devices because light cannot
pass through walls.
Velmenni did not invent Li-Fi. Credit for that goes to
University of Edinburgh professor Harold Hass in 2011. Since
then, researchers have been trying to refine the technology.
No one is predicting Li-Fi will replace Wi-Fi, which has
become as ubiquitous as landlines and telephone poles. On
the other hand, the advantages of integrating the two could be
tremendous. With simple retrofits to existing devices, users
could be connecting to the Internet through a single lamp.
Solanki expects Li-Fi to become available in consumer
applications in three or four years. (For more on Li-Fi, see “Light
Conversation,” ELECTRICAL CONTRACTOR, September 2015.)