Amphenol ICC offers a wide range of connectors to meet the rapidly growing demands of the lighting industry from Wire and PCB connectors to power distribution connectors. We also offer solutions designed with power and dimming/signal contacts to provide a connection between dimmable photocell and the luminaire for commercial and utility lighting, in intelligent buildings.
The IP67 rated connectors are ideal for use in industrial and harsh environment lighting. The Zhaga Book 18 compliant connectors can be used to provide dimming control, wireless connectivity, a variety of sensing and other functions making it an ideal option for roadway and smart city lighting.
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In a world characterized by accelerating technological developments in virtually every sector, energy efficiency is an increasingly important factor to consider. The growth of Artificial Intelligence and IoT enables and provides the underpinning for the development of intelligent networks, including Smart Lighting technologies which play an integral role in intelligent building systems, driving energy savings and ensuring environmental compliance. The use of technologies such as LED lighting and intelligent control systems result in greatly reduced energy consumption with the resultant reductions in carbon emissions and other forms of waste. This all contributes to improved efficiency in modern lighting designs, impacting interior and exterior lighting for households, buildings, street and area lighting, industrial and commercial lighting, automotive lighting, and in many other applications. All of this opens up a wide new arena of energy savings.
Smart Lighting Features
Controlling lights and meeting adequate levels of illumination in specified areas through the use of sensors is considered to be a key benefit of smart lighting, but the actual capabilities of this technology far exceed these basic functions. Street lighting systems typically consist of an interconnected architecture using an established communication network managed by a centralized building system or even through the cloud. Today, smart lighting technology incorporates IoT and AI with a variety of devices and technologies including occupancy sensors, air quality monitoring, light level sensing, and asset management, along with connecting a range of other services, like data collection and analysis, security, fire safety, climate control, and navigation.
Amphenol is a key provider of lighting connectors compliant with the two dominant standards bodies, NEMA/ANSI and Zhaga, and are used in various lighting applications including exterior lighting, street and area lighting, and interior lighting. These smart lighting connectors support control protocols such as Ethernet and DALI, are PoE (Power over Ethernet) and Cat5E capable, and in some cases are designed to withstand harsh environments with IP66 sealing.
Street and Area Lighting
The days of simple on-off lighting systems for city streets are far behind. Today, the uses of advanced sensors and communication protocols have revolutionized outdoor illumination. Modern street lighting is designed to provide enhanced energy efficiency with considerably less power usage and reduced maintenance cost as compared to the traditional lighting system.
Apart from these lighting functions, smart street and area lighting systems can also incorporate sensors capable of monitoring air quality, adapting to weather and traffic changes, and even alerting authorities when accidents occur. As a member of the Zhaga Consortium, Amphenol offers standardized roadway lighting connectors for photocells with dimming and sensor capabilities to enable remote-controlled IoT-based street lighting.
Street Lighting Connectors
The Amphenol range of dimming and sensor connectors include the ANSI C136.41-compliant FLA Series Dimming Receptacle. These receptacles come with UL94V-0 high-temperature resistant housings and are rated up to 15A per power contact. Designed with power and dimming/signal contacts, these twist lock receptacles are compliant with ANSI C136.10, providing a connection between the light-sensing photocell and the luminaire electronics for commercial and utility lighting applications. NEMA Lighting Sockets can also be mated with protective caps having shorting or non-shorting electrical function and an integrated sealing gasket ensuring environmental protection in the absence of a dimming/ photocell module.
The NEMA ANSI C136.41 FLB series bases and domes are designed as a platform for the photocell modules used in roadway and outdoor lighting applications. The FLB base coupled with one of the available dome covers provides a secure, integrated power and signal interface solution for use in roadway and area lighting photocell applications when mated with the FLA series receptacle utilizing twist-lock technology. These lighting connectors feature integrated mating gaskets and O-rings on the bases ensuring protection against moisture ingress.
Amphenol's FLS series receptacles and accompanying sensor bases and domes are compliant with the Zhaga Book 18 standard. Similar in function to the FLA/FLB series NEMA/ANSI photocell receptable and photocell connector products, the FLS series products are smaller in size, and designed with 4 contacts for Power, DALI (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface), and Digital I/O, suitable for mounting on both the top and bottom facing surfaces of a street lighting luminaire. Zhaga standards are designed to ensure compatibility of certified components from different manufacturers, allowing "plug and play" functionality in Zhaga luminaires.
Outdoor Lighting Connectors
Apart from street lighting, a variety of outdoor luminaires are prevalent in our modern environments, with a huge variety of applications from outdoor lighting on a house or commercial building, architectural lighting used in garden landscapes or public spaces, large area lighting such as for stadiums, commercial parking lots and illumination for billboards to name a few. Amphenol's FLH Series of IP67 rated latching wire-to-wire connectors feature high current capabilities up to 8A with 18AWG gauge wire, making it an ideal outdoor and harsh environment lighting connector.
For exterior lighting applications requiring a robust, sealed, latching cable-to-cable or cable-to-panel interconnect, Amphenol's Harsh Environment MRD series is a great choice, ideally suited for indoor farming applications using hanging LED grow lights typically in a wet, hot environment.
Indoor Lighting Connectors
The increasing prevalence of home and office automation and associated controls that can be accessed through devices such as smartphones, drives the usage of digitally controlled LED interior lighting systems. Interior lighting is one of the fastest growing market segments and bringing with it all of the architectural and aesthetic design options enabled by smart LED lighting.
Amphenol's FLM series Zhaga Book 20 connectors are two-position wire-to-wire and wire-to-board interconnects which include LEX-MR Receptacles (Luminaire Extension Module) and LEX-LP Plugs (Luminaire), used for DALI-2 (Digital Addressable Lighting Interface) applications. The FLM Series Connectors allow modules to connect to the LED driver and control system. While the DALI-2 bus enables bi-directional communication between luminaires and modules, the LEX-LP plug provides finger-proof contact protection. The LEX-MR receptacles are available as a right angle or vertical PCB mount with SMT tails, or as wire termination housings for use with crimp pin contacts or with integrated contacts using poke-in wire termination. The LEX-LP plugs are also available for use with wire crimp socket contacts or with integrated contacts with poke-in wire termination. Using FLM series DALI connectors ensures adherence to the "plug and play" functionality required by the Zhaga standards.
Smart lighting technology is not confined to smart cities and intelligent buildings but widely adopted in modern automotive technology as well. Adaptive headlights, smart LED lighting, and premier interior lighting add to the extravagance of each ride. Minitek MicroSpace™ and Minitek MicroSpaceXS™ are compact, robust, and versatile automotive lighting connectors which are USCAR-T2V2-compliant and meet LV214 severity-3 standards. While Minitek Microspce™ is offered in 1.27mm, 1.50mm, and 1.80mm pitch sizes, the latter is offered in 1.27mm pitch both in standard and waterproof versions.
Apart from standard lighting modules, Amphenol also offers a number of board-to-board connectors like Minitek®, BergStik®, Rib-Cage®, Conan®, Dubox®, PHEN/PHEC and Rotaconnect®, wire-to-board including Griplet®, Cross-Mate™, PV®, and Quickie®, in addition to Minitek® and Minitek Microspace™. We also have rugged input-output connectors like rugged USB, Modular Jack, D-Sub, HDMI, MRD, MRU, and FLH connectors that go into various smart lighting applications.
As the first step toward an intelligent environment, connected lighting is making the future brighter everywhere. In the future, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity will enable innovation in lighting to limitless applications and data capture requirements. Amphenol will continue to provide advanced interconnect solutions to help you create a sustainable, productive, and connected future with smart lighting connector solutions.