Echelon Gains Support of Australia’s Emergency Lighting Industry

March 12, 2007 by Jeff Shepard

Echelon Corp. announced that Clevertronics and White Lite Industries have selected Echelon’s LonWorks® power line communication products for their advanced emergency lighting systems in Australia. The selection of Echelon’s technology by these two emergency lighting suppliers shows the trend taking hold in Australia, as White Lite and Clevertronics now offer solutions that use the lighting power cabling infrastructure as the data network.

Australia has one of the more rigorous mandatory testing requirements for emergency lighting systems. These systems, comprising emergency exit signs and battery powered backup luminaires, must be tested at least once every six months. Traditional emergency lighting systems in Australia rely on twisted pair media to communicate emergency luminaire status information back to a central monitoring system. This required installing new wires for the system, whereas with Echelon’s technology the existing power lines can be used for communication, which reduces both installation time and cost. Futhermore, the new LonWorks based system can be easily expanded in the future, even by third-party service companies.

The Australian Gas and Light Company (AGL Energy) implemented a new system based on White Lite’s Bulldog system. Echelon’s power line technology employed in The Bulldog system helps building owners complete the required testing automatically, improving speed and accuracy and dramatically reducing the manpower required. The Bulldog System uses an IP backbone that connects to broadband networks via Echelon’s i.LON® 100 e3 Internet Server. The complete system can be remotely monitored and controlled via the Internet.

"We selected the LonWorks control platform and Echelon’s power line signaling for the Bulldog System because we wanted the most reliable, cost-effective and flexible platform," said John Childs, Managing Director of White Lite. "Echelon’s power line technology allows us to pass on installation savings to end users like AGL Energy and make use of a secure and underutilized asset, the power line network connecting all the luminaires. The Bulldog System relies on Echelon’s technology to provide significant cost savings to end-users, extremely high reliability, and great amounts of flexibility."

"Clevertronics was looking to upgrade and improve the technology employed in our emergency luminaire monitoring system," said Tony Todaro, Managing Director, Clevertronics. "We believe Echelon’s is the best power line based command and control technology on the market with extensively proven reliability under real-world conditions. Our business requires an extreme confidence in technology choices �¢ï¿½ï¿½ something only Echelon’s power line signaling could provide. Echelon’s power line transceivers and design products have allowed us to bring an innovative and reliable system to the market in a very short time."