Osram launches Simplux LED-centric smart lighting platform

April 25, 2017
Designed for small- to mid-size commercial spaces with 100 network nodes maximum, Osram’s Simplux is intended to be an easy-to-install and -commission smart lighting system that can scale to full IoT applications.

Designed for small- to mid-size commercial spaces with 100 network nodes maximum, Osram’s Simplux is intended to be an easy-to-install and -commission smart lighting system that can scale to full IoT applications.

Leading into LightFair International (LFI), Osram has announced the Simplux smart lighting platform designed for commercial spaces of around 10,000-ft2 or with a maximum of 100 network nodes. Osram calls Simplux a standalone wireless control system — meaning that it does not require a central light management system — and the company touts ease of installation and commissioning as a key feature. Still, Simplux networks can also be connected to Osram’s Encelium networked light management system via a software upgrade for full Internet of Things (IoT) functionality.

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Osram has offered the Encelium platform and the Polaris 3D lighting management software for a number of years after acquiring Encelium Technologies back in 2011. Back in 2015, the company launched the first wireless version of Encelium based on the ZigBee Pro network.

Simplux shares some basic architectural features with Encelium Wireless including the fact that ZigBee underlies both platforms and ZigBee gateways link to groups of network nodes. In the Simplux case, each Wireless Lighting Controller can connect to 100 nodes, which might be a mix of wireless sensors (occupancy or ambient light), Wireless Wallstations (control panels mounted traditionally on a wall), luminaires that integrate the Simplux Connected Lighting Module, and Wireless Control Modules for plug-load switching and demand response functionality.

The Simplux smart lighting platform delivers wireless control of up to 100 network nodes or 10,000 ft2 in commercial installations.

In the Simplux installation, the ZigBee Wireless Lighting Controller does not connect to a centralized system. Instead, a smartphone can be used to communicate with the controller directly via Wi-Fi. The smartphone provides simple commissioning capabilities and Osram supplies pre-set default settings to allow lighting designers/specifiers to immediately have access to functionally controlled lighting on a room-by-room, zone, or individual-fixture basis.

Osram touts that the Simplux system provides a plug-and-play avenue to meet demanding energy regulations such as California Title 24-2016 and ASHRAE 90.1-2016. “Many small- to mid-sized commercial space customers need a code-compliant solution that is simple to install and manage, and also can provide the adaptability required to meet their evolving needs,” said Tom Shottes, head of Osram Digital Systems for the Americas Region. “Simplux meets these criteria, providing customers with a unique solution that is both flexible and future proof.”

Osram believes that the Simplux platform can be utilized with any LED luminaire. We would expect the company to offer some luminaires with integral Simplux support. But other luminaire manufacturers, or even installers, can add the Connected Lighting Module to LED-based products. Or at the lighting system installation level, designers/specifiers can have installers add the plug-load modules directly to junction boxes with relay power controls and 0–10V outputs to link with compatible drivers.

Osram specifically identified schools, commercial offices, and warehouses as target applications. Installers can use the smartphone app to scan a barcode at install time to handle commissioning. Then the lighting system can easily be segmented by room, fixture, or zone and configured for a preset scenario or an easily modified custom scenario. Osram said designers/specifiers can begin to recommend the system for projects now and that the products will ship in June.

About the Author

Maury Wright | Editor in Chief

Maury Wright is an electronics engineer turned technology journalist, who has focused specifically on the LED & Lighting industry for the past decade. Wright first wrote for LEDs Magazine as a contractor in 2010, and took over as Editor-in-Chief in 2012. He has broad experience in technology areas ranging from microprocessors to digital media to wireless networks that he gained over 30 years in the trade press. Wright has experience running global editorial operations, such as during his tenure as worldwide editorial director of EDN Magazine, and has been instrumental in launching publication websites going back to the earliest days of the Internet. Wright has won numerous industry awards, including multiple ASBPE national awards for B2B journalism excellence, and has received finalist recognition for LEDs Magazine in the FOLIO Eddie Awards. He received a BS in electrical engineering from Auburn University.