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How to Size a Solar Lighting System

Sizing is a term used to describe the measurements and specifications of an off-grid solar lighting system, which is a system that is not connected to the main power grid. While this task may seem daunting as there are many details taken into account when sizing an off-grid system,  our expert team of engineers will provide these calculations for you. Here’s a brief outline on sizing a solar lighting system.

 

Unlike most grid-tied systems, solar powered systems are off-grid and naturally powered, which contributes several extra factors when sizing your system. Because there is not a one size fits all model to outdoor solar lighting, our engineers customize each project to your specifications. For example, we base our calculations on your specific location by longitude and latitude to understand the sun exposure in your area. Additionally, we base all of our estimations on the winter solstice, which is the worst case scenario for lighting projects. This ensures that you will still have light even when the least amount of sun is available in your area. In fact, our engineers have even optimized our lights to produce power in cold and snowy conditions for our Mammoth Lakes project.

 

There are four major steps to create your lighting system, including calculating the load estimation, solar panel amperage, the backup battery, and the inverter system.

 

Load Estimation

 

Load estimation refers to the total consumption of your solar system. When designing your solar lights, experts consider how much energy storage do you actually need in Amps at 12VDC. They figure how much total Watt per hour you need per day and multiply it by 1.3 to account for energy lost in the system.

 

Solar Panel Amperage

 

An important factor when designing your solar powered system is to figure out the amount of energy each solar panel produces. To do so, take the total Amps required and divide it by the amount of sun available. Then, add 20% extra as a safety net for days with less sunlight.

 

Amps Per Panel = (Total Amps/ Sunlight Per Day) X 1.2

 

Backup Battery

 

Since not all of us are blessed with bright and sunny skys everyday, a backup battery is essential when powering solar street lights. This battery should have a minimum of five nights of autonomy to ensure adequate lighting, with more nights available in the colder, northern regions.

 

To calculate your backup battery, simply multiply the total amps by the minimum amount of days required.

 

Inverter

 

A solar inverter, or PV inverter, converts the energy generated by the solar panel into usable energy. Typically, inverters convert a direct current (DC) of the solar panel into an alternating current (AC), which can be fed into a commercial grid.

 

To make life simpler, our solar street lights do not include an inverter, as they are off the main grid system. Our team of engineers will ensure that you will have usable energy in the upcoming years when sizing a solar lighting system.

 

That’s It!

 

Once all these steps are completed, our engineers will continuously work with you to ensure your vision for your project becomes a reality. Greenshine will guide you through this process from start to finish to guarantee the best lighting solution possible. If you have more questions, feel free to check out our solar F&Q page or leave a comment below.

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Brilliant Ideas for Beautiful and Functional Solar Lighting

As the solar industry grows, people are looking for new and innovative ways to use this technology to better their financial status and health of the environment. Below are just some of the examples of solar lighting.

Pathway Lighting

Pathway solar lighting is very popular among environmentalists due to its renewable energy source and ability to preserve the natural environment by not adding any light pollution. Installing and maintaining the light posts is easier to ever thanks to solar lighting systems off-grid system, which saves upfront on trenching and long term energy and maintenance bills.

Greenshine produces solar pathway lighting with durable LED lights that can not only outshine traditional lamp posts, but will cost nothing in the electricity bill of the district. These solar pathway lighting posts contain a solar panel, and are completely autonomous. To have a beautiful and durable light in your favorite park or street, ask your local officials to obtain these marvels of technology.

Bike Lane Lighting

Much like pathway lighting, bike lane lighting provides guidance to outdoor enthusiasts. However, it is maybe even more important to have strong and durable light on bike lanes. Cyclists move fast, so being able to see potential obstacles in time is paramount. Solar lighting collects sunlight during the day and uses the stored energy for lighting the pathway during the night.

Perimeter Lighting

 Perimeter lighting uses powerful LED floodlights to illuminate the perimeter of a storage yard, boat dock, military bases, etc. A large advantage of solar-powered perimeter lighting is that even during a power outage, these units are independent of one another or any central grid, so they will resume functioning. This type of lighting is best when you need to illuminate a large, spacious area and ensure the safety of your community by guaranteeing continuous light even in the most dire conditions. 

Landscape Lighting

Landscape lighting is dually decorative and function, serving as a function of beauty and safety. Bollard lights are a type of autonomous, decorative light mainly used for lighting pathways and gardens.  Solar projector lights and solar washer lights are used for illuminating monuments or landscapes in parks. Projectors are small and rounded, but they have powerful beams that provide ample light to light the surrounding area. Similarly, washer lights are in the shape of a rod, similar to a standard neon light.

Parking Lot Lighting

Parking lots are the most common and sought after type of solar street light. If you drive at night,  you want your parking lot to be properly lit to ensure the safety of you and your personal belongings. Greenshine offers an amazing parking lot lighting system  completely powered by solar energy that include strong, durable LED lights that will perfectly illuminate your parking lot for the night.

Sign Lighting

If you are a business owner, you know the importance of marketing and how a sign can benefit your business in multiple of ways. Illuminate your sign with a flood of pure LED light. 

Smart Solutions for Street Lighting: Commercial Solar Street Lights

commercial solar street lightsStreet lights are like superheroes. Without a doubt, they keep us safe and comfortable from the terrors that loom in the darkest hours of the nights, saving us from the woes that may come. While unsung heroes light up the night, they could seriously up your electricity bill. However, a new hero has emerged: commercial solar street lights. This lighting solution not only saves you from the creatures of the dark, but also helps you save on electricity bills, energy consumption, and upfront trenching costs.

Smart Infrastructure

Everyday, more and more cities are investing in replacements of their legacy lighting system with LED technology, which has proven to be a smart investment.

The combination of a solar system with LED lighting is especially practical in remote areas where LED-based lighting systems can be installed without setting up any external infrastructure in the traditional way.

Solar Power Systems for Street Lighting

Off-grid solar systems are not connected to the utility grid and therefore use zero power. Photovoltaic panels gather energy from the sun during the day and keep the battery bank charged. Batteries store the sun’s energy so that it can be used by solar street lights at night.

Off-grid solar systems are best suited for regions and countries where there is no power grid or where connecting the street lights to the grid can be expensive. These systems should have no other maintenance costs but for battery replacements approximately every seven to ten years.

An on-grid solar system is a system that is connected to the utility power grid. The electric power grid functions as a battery, as well. The system stores energy into the grid and then takes it back during the night.

No maintenance or battery replacements are needed for this system. This type of system uses a utility grid serves as a backup power source.

A hybrid solar system is a combination of the two above-mentioned systems. It uses batteries but can also feed excess energy into the electric power grid. Though these systems enable energy independence, they are more complex to install.

Commercial Solar Street Lights: A Solution to Street Lighting Problems

Visibility and safety. Commercial solar street lights can light up highways, streets, crossroads, and squares and improve illumination quality. Uniform distribution of light contributes to better visibility and safety of drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists. A well-lit street plays an important role in preventing accidents and robberies, improving the lifestyle of residents.

Energy consumption. Solar lighting is a solution to one of the burning issues today: high energy consumption. LEDs last twice as long as HID or HPS lamps but consume half the energy. They can deliver energy savings of 65 percent and considerably cut street lighting costs. And bonus, energy is obtained from a clean energy source!

Maintenance. Every street lighting network owner regularly face maintenance issues, such as broken lamps that need replacement and repair. By installing commercial grade solar street lights, operational and maintenance costs are reduced and the repair delays decreased.

Best Solar Street Lighting to Illuminate Streets

And so, the monsters of the night are hiding in deep dark corners thanks to commercial street lighting. People can rest safely in their homes knowing that solar street lights light up the night. Don’t you want to be a superhero too? Ensure the safety of your neighborhood by installing commercial street lights today! Save the Earth, save on costs, and save your residents from the darkness of the night.

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The Main Benefits of Exterior Solar Pathway Lighting

Danville Trail SunsetThe continuous advancements in technology have made solar outdoor lighting systems highly preferable over conventional grid-tied options. Solar pathway lighting is reliable, safe, and cost-effective, making it the perfect solution for any lighting needed. Wonder if solar pathway lighting is right for you? Check out some of the benefits below to find out if you want to go green.

Security and safety

Solar pathway lighting acts as an important security measure and a crime deterrent. Dark areas with poor or malfunctioning lighting pose both a health and safety risk. In these conditions, visibility is limited which increases the chances of an injury, theft, and other safety hazards. Pathway lights are used to illuminate parks and sporting venues, providing a safe and welcoming environment for nighttime activities.

Convenience

Most solar panels respond automatically to the level of light in the surrounding environment, so you won’t have to worry about turning them on and off constantly. They are designed to function regardless of whether it is a cloudy or sunny day.

Performance

LED lights are essentially synonymous with quality, efficiency, and performance. Available in a myriad of styles and models, LED lighting will work well with any requirements and aesthetic sense.

Quality exterior solar pathway lighting will endure a range of weather conditions, such as hot or cold temperatures and wind. LED lights are long-lasting, highly responsive, and operate up to 100,000 hours.

Energy savings

Solar pathway lights provide great energy savings. Off-grid solar power systems do not use electricity from the grid so they will not affect your electric bills. LED lights can be even eight times more efficient than incandescent lamps. At the same time, they emit much higher luminosity levels.

Given that it will provide brighter light for less energy used, solar LED lighting is the ideal solution for lighting pathways, walkways, and bike lanes. Rapid developments in LED technology, photovoltaic cells, and energy storage are creating a great opportunity for homeowners, businesses, and municipalities.

Altogether, exterior solar pathway lighting can save a lot of money. With the above-mentioned benefits such as low maintenance, high efficiency and durability, solar outdoor lights are a great investment that will cut both your energy-related emissions and electricity consumption.

Easy installation

Solar outdoor lights are perfect for pathways in remote areas because no wiring or trenching is required between the lights. Considering that connection to the grid isn’t necessary, solar-powered lighting can easily be installed instead of grid-tie lights. Therefore, solar lights can be placed wherever they are needed.

Low maintenance

Solar lighting systems are practically maintenance-free, which makes them a popular choice for businesses looking for a way to reduce installation, maintenance, and repair costs. Solar panels are highly durable since none parts can malfunction. LED lights also boast a long operating life and failure resistance, since the batteries are the only component that need to be replaced every so often.

Environmentally friendly

LED lights contain no mercury and other toxic chemicals, so no harmful emissions are created. The energy used to power exterior solar pathway lighting comes from a renewable energy source, which is not only economical but also safe for the environment.

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How to Evaluate Your Commercial Solar Parking Lot Lights

Many business or commercial property owners have invested in commercial solar parking lot lights to ensure that their business environment is well-lit and welcoming. As well as ensuring safety and security, a brightly-lit lot enhances customer interaction and trust toward a business.

If you are among these green business owners or you are planning to become one, check out these important lighting characteristics.

Lighting Indicators and Levels

Light level or illuminance is expressed in foot-candles (fc). Foot-candles refer to the amount of light that falls onto a square foot. Most parking lots vary between 0.5 and 5 fc. Both foot-candles and lux measure the amount of light delivered in a surface. One lumen per square meter is one lux.

The human eye cannot see illuminance but it can detect luminance. Keep in mind that brighter isn’t always better. Though you may feel tempted to over-illuminate your parking lot, be sure to remember that just like an under-lit lot, an over-lit parking lot can make it difficult for drivers to see.

Hire experienced engineers specialized in solar outdoor lighting, who will carefully plan out and design your parking lot for maximum safety, cost-effectiveness, and aesthetic appeal.

Lighting Uniformity

The lighting uniformity refers to the evenness of illumination in a space. Uneven illumination creates dark and bright spots, which affects perception and visibility. This makes it harder for the human eye to stay in focus.

With optimal commercial solar parking lot lights design, you can achieve adequate light levels and uniform lighting experience. To ensure proper parking lot configuration, the surrounding landscape and infrastructure should be taken into consideration. With no shadows and dark spots, the customers or visitors who park in your parking lot will feel safe and secure.

Color Temperature

The color rendering index (CRI) of a light source is a measure of the source’s ability to realistically reproduce all colors of the spectrum in comparison with a natural or ideal light source. In other words, CRI describes how a light source makes the color of an object appear to the human eye.

Poor color rendition won’t give observers the chance to spot and distinguish subtle color differences and contrasts on surfaces and objects. LED parking lot lights, however, can provide the most desirable color rendering index. A higher CRI in parking lot fixtures means a more natural and accurate output of light, enabling parkers in your lot to see more clearly.

Commercial Solar Parking Lot Lights Installation

If you want to illuminate your parking lot to make it more efficient, secure, and beautiful, contact Greenshine New Energy, LLC. Our knowledgeable team of engineers with ample experience in the field can work with you to design the perfect parking lot light solution for your needs.

Why Commercial Solar Lights Parking Lots are a Good Investment

solar panels - commercial solar lights parking lotsEco-friendly, pocket-friendly, and resistant to extreme weather conditions, solar parking lot lights are now being implemented on both small and large scales.

Paired with solar panel parking lot lights, LEDs can help you achieve a new level of efficiencywhile providing safety and security.

Here are the main reasons why solar parking lot lights are considered such a good investment.

Reduced Costs

LED lights are up to 80 percent more efficient than other types of lights. LEDs draw much less power and convert up to 95 percent of energy to light. Together with solar power, they provide a great solution for parking lots.

The photovoltaic panel charges the battery during the day, and the battery powers the LEDs during the night. Some businesses also see solar parking lots as a chance to provide an electric charging station for hybrid cars.

By installing solar parking lot lighting, you will notice daily energy savings and drastically decrease electric bills.

Improved Safety

LEDs have a large lighting spectrum range. Some have a brighter white light similar to sunlight provide better visibility, so their effective placement contributes to a safer parking lot.

Low Maintenance

Solar panels do not use the components that can rust or break down that require repair or replacement. The sun is a reliable, sustainable, and clean source of energy. It is also less expensive than fossil fuels. Once a solar system is installed, it will require little maintenance. One of these solar systems can provide electricity for 25 to 40 years.

Durability

Not only do LEDs provide more light with less power consumption, but they also have longer life span. LEDs can last up to 6 times longer than traditional lights, so there’s no need for frequent replacements. The longer their life cycle, the higher the savings.

Environmentally Friendly

Commercial solar lights parking lots are a step that a business can take to go green. Solar parking lot lights are environmentally friendly and contain no toxic chemicals. Considering their longer life span, fewer resources are needed for manufacturing purposes.

Choose #1 commercial solar lights for parking lots

Greenshine New Energy LLC. offers solar powered lighting systems for your business, home or community. We specialize in solar parking lot lights, street lights, garden lights, path lights, park lights and lawn lights.

Lighting Solutions for Rails with Trails

train - solar trail lightsTrails run along many active rail lines to provide transportation, access to transit, and recreational opportunities for thousands of Americans. There is also a growing number of former rail lines being converted into multi-purpose public paths.

Safety should always be the primary concern when developing a rail-with-trail. Illuminating rails is one of the ways to make the trail safe and more convenient to use at night. Let’s look at each player, the benefits/costs of each, and the overall quality of each type of lighting solution.

Types of Lighting

There’s a myriad of factors influencing lighting choices, such as trail location and features, overhead clearance, weather, soil content, etc.

Wired lights. Wired lighting is a costly decision. If well-designed and high quality, wired lighting can be easy to maintain and operate. However, it is expensive to install and complicated to repair.

The wires could be strung overhead or underground. Underground wiring is expensive but durable since it will not be damaged by poor weather conditions. While cheaper, overhead lighting is more vulnerable to weather-able conditions.

Battery powered lights. This option is the cheapest to install and repair but difficult to maintain since the batteries may need to be frequently replaced. If dead batteries go unnoticed, trail users have to face a dark section and their safety is jeopardized. For this reason, battery-powered lights are practical only on high-traffic trails, where a dead battery is likely to be replaced promptly.

Solar trail lights. These lights are powered by the sun so they are the most environmentally conscious solution. When solar trail lights are installed in more sunny regions, they are sure to operate at maximum strength.

This system also has little to no cost of operation, drastically reducing cost. Because there are no wires connecting solar lights, repairs are contained to a single fixture at a time, making repairs easy and time efficient.

LEDs. In comparison to standard incandescent bulbs, LEDs are extremely energy efficient and need very little power to generate light. They do have a higher initial cost but have an exceptional operational lifetime. Therefore, LEDs can provide huge long-term savings.

Reflective striping. Trails with dark spots and limited night use may benefit from the striping, which is the addition to the already existing lights. These white, flat and narrow reflectors can increase the amount of light and are especially useful if a trail is near a lit street.

Placement and Design

To develop a secure and accessible bicycle, pedestrian, and trail system, consult a professional who will plan out a proper design strategy. The implementation will help create a safe environment for trail users and rail operators.

Trail lighting that is well-placed, properly installed, and regularly maintained can enhance visibility, improve overall trail access, and convenience for users, supplying a  sense of security while using the trail from dusk till dawn.

Unlike highway lighting, trail lighting should be done on a small scale and only when necessary. Fixtures should shed light only on the path below. Preferably, there should be no glare or loss of light. In some cases, bollards would cast just enough light.

Maintenance

Wired lighting poses a challenge due to difficulties in tracking and repairing outages. A whole string of lights could go out when initially only one is the problem. With solar lighting, these problems can be avoided. Solar trail lights are practical because of their long lifespan, low cost, and maintenance. They can last for many years of stable operation if they are well cared for.

Rail to Trail Verdict: Solar Trail Lighting

Solar trail lights are an efficient, green and economical solution. They are a sustainable solution for well-lit spaces since they are built to last. Reliable and cost-effective, solar lighting provides energy savings and contributes to the safety of anyone going jogging at night, cycling after dinner or taking an early-morning walk along a rail.

At Greenshine New Energy LLC., we specialize in developing and manufacturing solar street lights, garden light, path light, park lights and lawn lights for outdoor applications. Our solar lighting solutions work on innovative technology to provide communities with top-notch solar trail lights at competitive prices and free of maintenance.

Key Elements for Optimizing Parking Lot Lights

parking lot lightsCommercial lighting has advanced profoundly to yield considerable energy efficiency gains. Solar parking lot lights have proven to be a smart choice for a variety of reasons, especially in sun-kissed California. There is no ultimate cookie-cutter approach. Parking lots and facilities come in different shapes and sizing, since light requirements will depend on the location and use of the space. When it comes to the logistics, visibility and safety, there are many factors to consider. Here are the most important ones.

Light quality

Think of the ideal lumen output and the color temperature for your parking lot. LED parking lot lights emit a cooler color temperature suitable for car dealerships or banks, and they consume significantly less energy than traditional HID bulbs.

Light quantity

More light does not mean better illumination. Pay attention to the luminous intensity (candela), the quantity of light emitted by the light fixture illuminating a surface (illuminance), and lumen. The higher the lumen rating, the brighter the light bulb will appear.

Uniformity

Another important factor is the lighting uniformity. Though HPS lighting may give out more lumens than a solar LED luminaire, it has lower uniformity. Higher uniformity ratios allow us to perceive the environment continuously, with no contrast between bright and darker areas. Too much contrast would make it harder to see vehicles and people in the darker areas. Also, the image on the security camera would contain cool spots and hot (bright) spots. One of the advantages of LEDs is that they are more directional, so they offer a much better uniformity and visibility. This helps drivers and pedestrians, as well as aids in viewing images on the security camera.

Design parameters

The location and size of the parking lot have a big impact on the parking lot lighting layout. If a parking lot is asymmetrical, it will require specific distribution of lighting fixtures. The growth of trees, adjoining building positions and other types of landscaping can also affect the outdoor lighting. There’s a chance that a well-designed parking lot lighting system will become ineffective as trees grow to a point to block a large amount of light.

Distribution pattern

There are various distribution patterns of lighting fixtures. Each pattern provides a different lighting footprint on the ground. Type III is meant for parking lots and roadway lighting, where the larger amount of light is required. The footprint on the ground is approximately 2.75 times wider than the mounting height.

Customized parking lot lights

To make sure that you get a reliable and efficient solar system that meets your needs, consider customizing your parking lot lights. Greenshine New Energy, LLC. specializes in developing and manufacturing customized solar powered lighting systems like street lights, parking lot lights, pathway lights, and perimeter lights for outdoor applications. Greenshine’s solar outdoor lighting solutions are a prime example of the top-notch quality and innovative technology.

Useful Tips for Landscape Pathway Lighting

Pathway lighting - landscaping tipsNo landscaping venture is complete without decorative pathway lighting. If you are planning on modeling your backyard or any similar project, you might want to consider installing solar pathway lights as a cost-effective and beautiful solution for your lighting needs. Here are some tricks and tips you might appreciate before you actually install these.

Spacing Your Pathway Lighting

The most common use of solar landscape lights is pathway lighting. Prior to installing your solar lights, you need to make sure that the place you intend to put solar lights gets plenty of direct sunlight. Then, set the distance between two solar lights as it is up to you to decide whether you want the path to be brightly illuminated (recommended for difficult terrain), or if you want to use solar lights only as accent lights.

Panel Angling

Typical landscape lights are known as bollards. These have the solar panel on the top of the fixture and LED lights just below it. When you are installing these light fixtures, you need to make sure that your solar panel gets as much direct sunlight as possible, so you will have to consider the angle at which to put your light fixture. This can vary depending on your geographic location as it affects the time and intensity of light on your property. If needed, use a solar lighting companies for the best advice.

Mind the Sensors

The majority of contemporary solar lights are turned on or off automatically by measuring the surrounding light levels. You need to be careful not to place solar lights too close to any other source of artificial light. This includes street, garage, and porch lights. If it detects the light coming from another source, the solar light will not activate. If your solar light is not functioning properly, check whether that is the problem before you contact the maintenance company to check it out.

Cleaning and Storing Solar Lights

When storing solar lights, you need to follow some basic rules. The most important one is keeping them dry, since electronics and batteries do not react well to moisture. Do not to keep them in darkness. If they cannot recharge and discharge, the batteries tend to lose the ability to hold charge. As for cleaning them, the most important part to keep clean is the panel itself. You want to keep the debris off of it as much as possible in order to ensure the best possible performance. A dry cloth and some soapy water will do the trick.

Solar lights are often mentioned as a great alternative for parking lots and industrial complexes, but they are also used for these smaller and more creative applications. Greenshine offers a wide selection of solar lights including decorative, commercial and industrial solar lights. Contact us today to discuss your project today.

How Solar Lights Will Affect Your Business

How-solar-affects-business-_Solar-outdoor-lightingWith increasing electrical costs, high price of oil, and growing concern over the environment, solar energy is on the rise. Many businesses are adopting to this renewable energy source to benefit from its cost-effective, reliable, and eco-friendly aspects. One of the ways many are switching over is by installing solar lights in their business. Here is everything you need to know before you install solar lights in your business.

Solar Lighting

Solar outdoor lighting fixture consists of a solar panel on the top of the light post. Connected to a battery pack inside the post, the LED lights illuminate your parking lot, street, and business. It is completely self-sustainable and doesn’t need to be attached to the power grid.

Installation cost

Solar lighting is completely self-sustainable and doesn’t need to be attached to the power grid. This will save you both time and money in upfront installation costs and maintenance. These solar outdoor lighting fixtures are easy to mount and require no further setup. They are also independent of each other, so you can put as many or few as you want.

Customer Impact

Many people today are aware of the adverse effect we have on the planet. From terrible droughts to scorching heat, there is clear sign to people that we need to turn to alternative sources of energy. One of the most promising is solar. Your lights will sport a crown of solar panels, signaling to the customers that you are environmentally aware and building brand dominance. People are always impressed when they see someone who has made the transition to this source.

Financial Benefits

After the initial installation, your only expense will be replacing the LEDs once they break (which happens very rarely thanks to the advances in LED technologies) and occasional maintenance. Your electricity bill will not be burdened by the lights outside your place of business. Additionally, with the use of solar energy comes a kind of prestige and reputation that will  bring you additional revenue.

 

There is an abundance of good reasons to install solar outdoor lighting, but the most important should be your willingness to be the part of the solution. Greenshine New Energy is a company which provides various solar-powered products, including solar outdoor lighting for parking lots, streets, parks or a variety of other uses. Feel free to contact us today to learn more.