DALI Technology to Help Simplify IoT Complexities for Luminaire Manufacturers

Posted Apr 10, 2018 by Vineet Vikram

DiiA, the global DALI alliance, is taking further steps to bring the extensive benefits of Digital Addressable Lighting Interface (DALI) to the Internet of Things (IoT). Having established the DALI-2 certification process, which secures interoperability between DALI devices, DiiA is developing new specifications that extend the well established DALI lighting protocol. These will create new possibilities for DALI technology in the IoT age, while making use of DALI’s strength as a robust, reliable and relatively low-cost communication technology optimized for lighting applications.

The Digital Illumination Interface Alliance (DiiA) is an open, global consortium of lighting companies that aims to grow the market for lighting-control solutions based on DALI technology. It was established in response to industry requests for an independently-verified DALI-2 certification program that covers the functionality specified in version 2 of the IEC 62386 family of international standards.

DiiA is standardizing the way in which DALI drivers can exchange measurement and diagnostic data in a well-defined format. Such a standardized data model is essential for DALI products to participate in the IoT world. Building on this, DiiA is also seeking to simplify the connection of luminaires to the IoT via in-built communication nodes.

The standardized data model will specify the content and format of measurement and diagnostic data, as well as the location of the data in the DALI driver. This will enable seamless data exchange between DALI products. For example, luminaires could provide power consumption data, allowing energy analytics and further improving servicing and maintenance within lighting systems.

Building on this harmonized data-model, DiiA is also developing a specification for DALI drivers to provide power to sensors and/or communication devices that are integrated into luminaires. This eliminates the need to provide mains power to the communication or sensor nodes, or to use a separate DALI power supply. The specification will simplify the creation of a DALI network inside a luminaire, and will enable intelligent lighting fixtures that can communicate with the IoT via DALI connected sensing/communication nodes. This interface could also allow upgrading of luminaires to the latest IoT technology.