White Paper - Connected Ready

The Schréder lighting and beyond lighting solutions bring meaningful moments to people by enhancing safety, well-being and sustainability in public spaces.

CONNECTED-READY Smart choices today, smart cities tomorrow




4 4 5 6 7 8 9








10 10 11





MAKING DECISIONS TODAY FOR A BETTER TOMORROW More than half of the world’s population now lives in urban areas, and 68% of us will be living in cities by 2050, according to UN forecasts . At the same time, cities account for over 70% of global CO 2 emissions . Citizens, urban planners and stakeholders worldwide are turning to innovative solutions to focus on decarbonisation and Net Zero and play their part in fighting climate change. The future will be determined by actions taken today. Digital and connected lighting plays a vital role in transforming public spaces. It makes people feel safer after dark and, when designed and balanced correctly with spaces and places in mind, can have a major impact on footfall, economic activity, well-being and the city’s image. People are using public spaces differently and interacting with them in new ways; cities which aspire to global leadership need to keep pace with these citizen-driven and necessary challenges. Street lighting can integrate smart technologies such as sensors, cameras and control systems to improve citizens’ lives. Already present throughout urban areas, it can connect with other devices to exchange data, and even be used in a “Digital Twin” model of the city to help decision-makers plan improvements and expansion. The initial wave of transition to LED lighting has resulted in vast energy savings across urban centres worldwide. To be truly smart, cities require an interoperable Central Management Systems (CMS), such as Schréder EXEDRA , which intelligently puts lighting at the service of citizens with a wealth of smart functions. The choices faced by urban planners, city authorities and lighting designers can seem overwhelming. But taking one thing into consideration when planning a lighting upgrade can make a huge difference: we believe project owners should always choose a connected-ready solution. This white paper aims to explain what connected-ready luminaires are, why they are useful, and how by considering the options available to planners and cities, you can create a more sustainable and environmentally balanced journey.


WHAT IS CONNECTED- READY? The decisions that city leaders take now will affect how cities, towns and villages will function in five, ten or twenty years. Lighting is an essential ecosystem and as residents and visitors’ needs evolve, urban infrastructure must be capable to adapt to this journey. With connected- ready technology, communities can be flexible and activate the future without changing their infrastructure.

It is not connected yet, but it can easily become part of a connected system if and when the asset owner wants to activate one.

In hardware terms, there are two options. One option is to buy a connected-ready luminaire that comes with a socket, where a NEMA or Zhaga node can be added later. The other option is to buy a luminaire already fitted with a node, where the node is not yet connected to a CMS. The second option ensures that future lighting infrastructure can be connected instantly, without any manual interventions on-site, saving time and money. In addition, a luminaire that has been bought connected-ready, can easily have its unique asset data retrieved by a remote management system such as Schréder EXEDRA. This enables easy, cost- effective asset management through the connected functions. So connected-ready means the luminaire isn’t connected yet, but it can easily become part of a connected system if and when the asset owner wants to activate one.


WHY DOES IT MAKE SENSE? Connected-ready is a great choice for local authorities who want to upgrade their lighting, either by switching to LED or improving existing LED solutions, but do not want to install a CMS right now. Cities might want to see which system would best suit their needs, run pilot projects or consult with peers. They may want to carry out research into wildlife populations: The Living Planet Report 2022 shows that global wildlife populations have plummeted by 69% on average since 1970 . Connected lighting can be easily adjusted in terms of colour warmth and brightness to avoid disturbing animal populations and with machine learning continue to adjust based on real-time events. They might not be sure which smart features would be most useful for their community. Connecting lighting opens an extensive range of smarter possibilities. From basic dimming to adaptive lighting, targeted maintenance and IoT sensors for environmental and security benefits, the scope to enhance city spaces and places are realised. It could be a simple budgetary matter, where there are funds for a lighting upgrade, but not a CMS - yet. Connected-ready means the lighting installation is futureproof and can be adapted to tomorrow’s needs without costly additional interventions.

CONNECTED- READY OPTIONS ► WITH A SOCKET Luminaires can be supplied with a socket to install a NEMA or Zhaga node at a later date. This is a more complicated process than simply activating the existing nodes as a manual intervention will be necessary to install the nodes at a later date. However, it is still better value and more sustainable than replacing or upgrading a non-connected-ready luminaire. ► WITH A NODE The luminaire is delivered with a NEMA or Zhaga node that is not yet activated. The difference between NEMA and Zhaga nodes is explained below. ► CONNECTING EXISTING STREET LIGHTS At Schréder, the customer is at the heart of everything we do and our technology is engineered to our customers needs. There are alternative solutions for attaching nodes to luminaire brackets and poles but not to the luminaire itself. This involves attaching a receptacle that contains a node, fitting them to poles and brackets, or other customised solutions. Sometimes, these can be useful for projects with a particular aesthetic/heritage constraint. This option involves a heavy manual intervention, takes longer and inevitably looks less tidy than a socket.

Connected-ready means the lighting installation is futureproof and can be adapted to tomorrow’s needs without costly additional interventions.


CASE STUDY Heiningen

The town of Heiningen, in southern Germany wanted to upgrade to smart lighting to save energy and reduce its carbon footprint. They achieved this by adjusting the light levels on the main street to reflect the volume of traffic. As a bonus, they chose a lighting system that protects local insect populations, without compromising road safety. The system was installed a few years after the LED lighting upgrade - with minimal fuss, because the authorities had invested in a connected-ready solution.

For a “normal” local or residential street, it makes sense to buy and install connected-ready lighting, and then, in a second step, complete the smart upgrade in line with requirements. I just think that while it doesn’t make sense to connect every street today, it would be frustrating to have not paid a reasonable premium to make them connected-ready, only to find in a few years’ time that it would make sense to include them in a smart system, but connecting them is extremely expensive.

Norbert Aufrecht Mayor of Heiningen


A NOTE ABOUT NODES Globally, there are two main types of standardised electro-mechanical interfaces to combine nodes with a luminaire: ANSI C136.41 (so called NEMA) and Zhaga book 18 (so called Zhaga-D4i). In both cases, a node can be plugged onto the corresponding receptacle of the luminaire during installation of the luminaire, or retrofitted at a later stage. Schréder luminaires can accommodate either or both. Both NEMA and Zhaga are open and futureproof and while we believe that Schréder EXEDRA is the most functionally and scalable complete CMS on the market, we also believe that customers can choose the solutions that best suit their city. The best way to choose between NEMA and Zhaga is to assess the specifications of the lighting infrastructure, what the objectives are and how the lighting infrastructure will be used. Both options bring potential shortcomings and benefits for future smart lighting control, and each ecosystem is open to provide flexibility and modularity to meet the different use cases of tomorrow’s cities. This is why Schréder supports and delivers compatibility with both the Zhaga-D4i and NEMA options.



NEMA stands for the National Electrical Manufacturers Association, an association created in the USA in 1926 which writes standards for electronic products. Any object can become connected to a system through a NEMA receptacle, including geolocalisation technology. Proper handling of the luminaire’s asset data during manufacturing is essential to ensure it is futureproof. With a NEMA node, the mains power passes through the node before it reaches the luminaire and its driver. A NEMA controller therefore includes surge protection, low voltage power supply, energy metering, and mains switching of the load, in addition to connectivity and luminaire control interface. If it is supplied connected-ready, it comes with a “shorting cap” which is removed and relaced by the node when it is connected. The NEMA interface supports several alternative protocols in terms of control interface and allows multiple potential uses as the controllers have two extra pins to connect other applications. It is therefore ideal for nodes with high demands (smarter sensing capabilities, higher bandwidth connectivity, etc.). It is a good choice for more complicated smart city features, or if multiple objects will be attached to the node.

The Zhaga Consortium was established in 2010 to set standards for the interfaces for components used in LED luminaires. The consortium is a membership programme of the IEEE Industry Standards and Technology Organisation. Zhaga’s specifications, which are called Books, address electrical, mechanical, optical, thermal and communication interfaces and enable component interoperability. Books mean that components are interoperable, easy to service and replace, and that an LED luminaire can be upgraded after installation when new technology is available. I With a Zhaga node, the mains supply reaches the luminaire first, and the driver provides a limited auxiliary 24V power supply to the node through the Zhaga receptable. As a result, the driver used in this architecture has more features than a conventional driver, such as enhanced surge protection, auxiliary power supply, energy metering and diagnostics, while the Zhaga-D4i based control device only provides the connectivity and the DALI control interface within the given power limit. While still truly interoperable, it is smaller and therefore less intrusive aesthetically. It can be a wise choice for luminaires where aesthetic appeal needs to be maximised.


CONNECTED-READY FOR INSTANT DATA Connecting a luminaire requires data about that asset, and other lighting devices nearby. The quality and accuracy of the data is paramount: to control your lighting in the future, you need to know which devices are in the field and how they are equipped. Once connected, the data can be automatically imported into a CMS such as Schréder EXEDRA which proceeds to an auto-inventory and auto- commissioning. The lighting infrastructure can then be monitored, maintained and controlled in an optimal way through both manual and automatic interventions. Imagine connecting a luminaire that doesn’t have any known asset data. It sends back power readings: 40 watts. But what is the expected nominal power of the luminaire? Should it be 70 watts? 20? Maybe it is 40 and everything is fine? Without this knowledge, operating data is meaningless. With a connected-ready luminaire, the asset data is properly recorded during the manufacturing of the luminaire and is digitally retrievable. This ensures that when the node is powered by the luminaire, all this data is automatically imported. We believe that customers should have total freedom in their choices and put interoperability at the heart of everything we do. Some CMSs, such as Schreder EXEDRA can complete the inventory automatically, but not all can, so this is another consideration for mayors, planners and experts as it saves time, money, energy and stress.



Once luminaires are connected, the data is transferred to the system which in the case of Schréder EXEDRA then performs automatic inventory and commissioning. This enables the lighting to be adapted to spaces, weather conditions, schedules, special events or any kind of constraint, change or evolution. System owners can customise the system infinitely: whether their city is dealing with football matches, traffic surges due to motorway diversions, or wildlife breeding seasons, they can have the right lighting in the right place at the right time . In addition, tracking and device usage statistics are available. The CMS provides an accurate view of the assets’ capabilities and helps to plan maintenance and manage their lifecycle. An alarm system detects and diagnoses faults, and electrical measurements are taken, enabling predictive maintenance, and making it easier to plan maintenance operations efficiently. The technology is also self-healing and can resolve issues without the need for human intervention. Energy conservation metrics are also monitored to help make data-driven decisions on sustainable planning and energy savings for the city.


CIRCULAR ECONOMY FOR LUMINAIRES OF EVERY SHAPE Changing the lighting without changing the luminaires is a huge advantage for cities. Urban centres worldwide are making huge efforts to play their part in reaching decarbonisation and Net Zero, and the circular economy is more than just an aspiration but a reality. We have been upgrading existing luminaires with minimal waste for decades and connected-ready is a natural continuation of this work. Connected-ready infrastructure helps cities to actively engage in a more circular economy. Firstly, no new luminaires will be needed when you decide to connect your lighting system. Then, once connected, the data can be imported into an asset management system that ensures a very durable infrastructure. The lifespan of the assets can be extended because the system makes it possible to know which part is defective and what can be replaced on-site and therefore keep critical components in stock. Without this advantage, it could be necessary to replace the luminaire. Technology that can adapt to any challenge, requirement, or transformation is a huge asset for communities. In 10 or 15 years, when the lighting technology has reached the next level of control and evolution, a simple replacement of the nodes will ensure the upgrade of the lighting installation without having to change all the lighting devices. SCALABLE,


Decarbonisation is a top priority for city and urban planners worldwide and connected lighting is a great way to reduce energy consumption and carbon emissions to meet national and international policy targets. Connecting to a standardised, open and interoperable ecosystem enables the lighting to work with other services and infrastructure in the city. A connected- ready network is the first step in this journey and an opportunity to transform city lighting from a necessary expense to a strategic asset - while providing time to think about which system could best meet the city’s need in the future.


CONCLUSION Today’s Decisions, Tomorrow’s Benefits From the UN Sustainable Development Goals to national measures such as the UK’s For urban planners, city authorities and lighting designers, the array of choices can seem

decarbonisation plans and France’s laws on light pollution, local authorities have never been under more pressure to save energy, reduce their carbon footprint and ensure their assets are a part of the circular economy. Public lighting can play a major part in achieving these goals. At the same time, effective public lighting can make citizens feel safer, bring new life to areas after dark, and, through placemaking, enable citizens to see their area in a whole new light. Investment in lighting is something that can be seen and felt by residents and visitors alike.

overwhelming. But whatever luminaires, systems and styles are chosen, there is one decision that should be easy: opting for a connected-ready solution. This means that street lighting can become part of a smart system with minimal cost and zero (or minimal) manual intervention. Connected-ready lighting is a small decision to take today that provides a wealth of options for tomorrow. City, town and village authorities need to use residents’ resources wisely: investing in connected-ready infrastructure is choosing sustainability and savings for the future.




Copyright © Schréder S.A. 2023 - Executive Publisher: Stéphane Halleux - Schréder S.A. - rue de Mons 3 - B-4000 Liège (Belgium) - The information, descriptions and illustrations herein are of only an indicative nature. Due to advanced developments, we may be required to alter the characteristics of our products without notice. As these may present different characteristics according to the requirements of individual countries, we invite you to consult us.

Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12


Powered by