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Solar Street Lights With Camera: Are They Worth It?

The dual forces of high-performance solar panels and high-density batteries continually drive innovations in the solar street light industry. Solar street lights with camera are among the latest inventions, and they are gaining traction in multiple sectors.

What are solar street lights with camera?

Remote monitoring is a crucial aspect of modern governance and management in both public and private sectors. Although this feature itself is not novel, contemporary society demands a more intelligent and sustainable approach to its implementation.

Solar street lights with camera make some systematic upgrades upon the current solar street lights and include a remote surveillance feature.

All the energy required for the camera's operation is supplied by the light's solar panel and rechargeable battery storage module. In this way, solar street lights act as an "all-in-one" platform and contribute to the "greenification" of the power source for the surveillance camera.

The different types of solar street lights with camera

Solar Street Light With Camera

It should be acknowledged that there are countless options when it comes to the variants of monitoring cameras which can be categorized by screen resolution, degree of rotation and much more.

While in the context of solar street lights, the most-concerned classification is the transmission method of the imagery and videos captured.

  • WiFi cameras: The integrated cameras are connected to the Internet via centralized WiFi hotspots. This is the most common method to establish a stable connection and is generally ideal for most installation sites.
  • 5G cameras: As the latest mobile network technology, 5G can reach speeds of several hundred Mbps, ensuring stable and smooth data transmission. This technology can be applied at sites where constructing network infrastructure is costly.

Another major classification is the integration level of the surveillance camera on the light.

  • All-in-one solar street lights with camera: This can be considered as an upgraded version of the current prevalent all-in-one LED solar street lights. The camera is tailor-designed for the street light and fixed on the downside of the light housing. Eventually, all components of the light are integrated in/on the housing, presenting a very compact look.
  • Split-style lights with camera: The surveillance camera and other modules are separated on these lights. The camera can be fixed on the light pole or hung beneath the light arm with accessories.

What are their applications?

As long as they adhere to local privacy protection regulations, solar street lights with surveillance camera can have extensive applications in commercial & industrial (C&I) sectors as well as residential areas. Some typical applications include:

Solar street lights with CCTV camera for highways

Equipped with solar power and surveillance technology, these devices illuminate highways and provide 24/7 traffic monitoring in a green way. The integrated cameras serve as vigilant eyes, aiding in traffic flow management, accident detection and law enforcement, paving the way for a greener, safer future in road transportation.

Lights with camera for parking lots

Enhancing parking lot safety and sustainability, solar street lights with camera are a game-changer. Through sunlight, they self-power their lighting and surveillance capabilities, leading us toward safer and greener parking spaces that promote security and environmental responsibility.

For roadways in facilities

Similarly, solar street lights with camera provide dual capabilities to commercial blocks, factories, hospitals, campuses and many other facilities.

Residential solar street lights with camera

These residential lights are perfect additions to residential settings with dual benefits. Installed in yards or over fences, they illuminate outdoor spaces, enhancing safety and visibility after sunset. Their camera facilitates real-time monitoring, acting as a deterrent to theft and offering peace of mind. For pet owners, you can keep an eye on your furry friends and make sure they're safe and happy while you're away. 

Other noteworthy features and how to choose these lights

Apart from the network connection type, the cameras on these street lights also vary in aspects such as resolution ratio, degree of rotation, data storage method and more. Some cameras are even equipped with advanced features like infrared night vision, multiple optical zoom levels, two-way communication, AI-powered unmanned monitoring, and interfaces for multi-platform management.

While the options are numerous, the fundamental consideration lies in the data transmission method of the surveillance camera. As mentioned earlier, utilizing a WiFi camera generally maintains a more stable connection as the associated hotspot offers an exclusive network service for the transmission. Conversely, the 4G/5G cameras are easy to install and do not require other associated network devices or units. They are more ideal for sites where the network base stations are reliable enough and the bandwidth resources are ample.

All-In-One Style Solar Street Light With Surveillance Camera
Venalsol Light

The choice between all-in-one style and split style solar LED street lights with camera should factor into aesthetic demand, budget and maintenance cost. Adopting the all-in-one design presents a compact, elegant look, while the split style offers more flexibility for camera maintenance.

We can refit existing lights and add cameras, isn't that good??

Indeed, it is possible to retrofit an existing solar-powered street light by adding a camera to realize the surveillance capability. However, you are required to have a throughout inspection of the electrical specs and the performance of the current light since adding a new electronic device to the current load directly impacts the light's overall circuit and energy consumption.

Though the power rate of surveillance cameras ranges from several watts to ten watts, the cameras should be turned on 24/7 to ensure their regular functionality, WHILE the lighting module only consumes energy at night.

These situations necessitate that the solar panel of the light should have a decent energy output, the battery should have a large capacity and demonstrate excellent endurance under continuous energy consumption, and the associated battery management system and power controller should be able to prop up the load well and be reliable enough.

Undertaking such a retrofit involves lots of considerations. Ultimately, whether the whole system can operate smoothly requires time-consuming tests, and the cost could be higher than your expectation. In short, this process is not as straightforward as merely attaching a camera to an existing street light!

On the contrary, specialized solar street lights with camera are developed with all electrical and mechanical subjects in mind. These units undergo rigorous testing and acquire necessary certifications before being introduced to the market. As such, they provide a more cost-effective, optimized and reliable solution.

Pros and cons; are they worth it?

Solar street lights with surveillance camera bring the merits of solar and energy storage technology into the digital ecosystem comprising of the latest communication, image, IoT, AI and cloud computing technologies. 

Though widespread and large-scale adoptions in utility areas have not been seen yet, they are an ideal solution in both commercial and residential fields, furnishing lighting surveillance dual capabilities in a net-zero way.

View 1 Comment▾
  1. esentia says:

    This blog post does a fantastic job of addressing the practicality of solar street lights with cameras. It's essential to weigh the benefits of enhanced security and eco-friendliness against the initial cost. The insights provided here make it easier to make an informed decision, and I appreciate the clarity of the analysis. Thank you for shedding light on this topic!

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