Come this November, 3037 LED lights start to be installed in Pictou County as part of the provincial government mandate for all municipal units to do the changeover to a greener of technology.
The municipalities had to decide if they want to purchase the lights themselves or have the new lights installed and maintained by Nova Scotia Power.
Ken Kovachik, director of marketing for LED Roadway Lighting, tells The News why they are the way of the future:
Why the changeover?
• Energy savings. The old high-pressure sodium lamps consume a lot more power than the LED lights.
• Less Maintenance: The sodium have a four- to five-year life span. LED technology is about 20 years. This means fewer pole visits and less maintenance costs.
•Easier maintenance: They can be replaced in the field by sliding a clip over, releasing LED board and connector for electrical aspect, removing light and replacing with a new one.
• Green elements: Less maintenance means fewer trucks on the road, less carbon emissions, no mercury.
A bright future:
• LED Roadway Lights have its product installed in 50 countries around the world. It started investigating LED technology for streets in 2006. In 2007, Nova Scotia Power installed its first LED light system.
• The company’s fixtures are manufactured in Amherst, N.S., and this is its only manufacturing plant in Canada.
• The LED light’s biggest enemy is heat. It can shorten the life span of the lights so many of the models have fins that are specifically designed to get rid of the heat. Since the heat is being vented off the light, it will melt snow and prevent build-up.
A bright future in Pictou County:
• Lights will be delivered to Pictou County between Nov. 4 and Dec. 4, starting with Trenton. They will be installed by Black and MacDonald which has worked on a large number of projects with LED Roadway Lighting.
• Mapping was done to determine if all the lights being replaced were necessary and in proper locations.
• Once installed, the municipal units will have a contract in place to provide maintenance. The lights being installed in Pictou County are part of the NXT series.
Trenton is receiving 378 units, Pictou 518 and the Municipality of Pictou County 2141. Total energy savings from the conversion in these three units is estimated at 55.9 per cent.
•The municipalities of Westville and Stellarton stayed with Nova Scotia Power for their conversion while New Glasgow converted its lights over in December 2011.
Even newer technology:
•New things are being tried in the LED field everyday. The company is now focusing on how it can control a streetlight. For example, does the light need to be as bright at 3 a.m. as it is at 8 a.m.?
• Smart grid technology is also on the books that will consolidate all technology, such as streetlight and gas meter monitoring into one system.