Solar LED street lights are considered to be efficient and high performing lightening products which are capable of operating on solar energy without requiring any other additional power source. However, it is not widely known that the solar led street light cost benefits as compared to traditional street lights available in the market and they can provide a high value of the investment to users. Therefore, a number of different studies have been carried out in order to make an assessment of solar LED street light benefits from both qualitative and quantitative perspectives. The researchers have identified a number of different reasons which are responsible for the cost-effectiveness of street lights while other researchers have calculated cost benefits in quantitative terms in different designs of the world.
Therefore, in this article, we will explain the reasons that are important for solar LED street light cost benefits as well as provide a framework with the help of which users can make an assessment of benefits that they might accrue for the use of solar street lights in their area.
Reasons that are instrumental in Solar LED street light cost benefits
There are a number of different reasons that play a role in enabling the cost benefits of solar street lights and providing greater value to the customers. A summary of the most significant reasons is given below:
- High energy saving: Solar LED street lights have high energy saving properties as compared to traditional street lights for high-pressure sodium lights. Studies have shown that LED street lights require 80% less energy for their operation and standard performance as compared to traditional lights due to which they are able to provide great value to the customers through utilising less amount of energy. Therefore, energy-saving of solar street lights is one of the important factors towards their cost-effectiveness.
- Longer lifespan: Solar LED street lights have much longer lifespans as compared to traditional lights due to the efficiency of the technology that is used in their manufacturing. The LEDs that are used in solar street lights have higher efficiency and longer life spans as compared to the traditional lamps or incandescent bulbs due to which they can easily outlast their operation. Therefore, the longer lifespan of solar street lights makes them cost-effective as compared to the traditional street lights available in the market.
- Savings in operation and maintenance cost: The LED street lights have much lower requirements of maintenance since most of the solar street lights are maintenance-free and can operate for a longer period of time without running into faults or other problems. Therefore, they are capable of making significant savings in operation and maintenance costs due to which the overall cost-effectiveness of the solar lighting products is increased and they provide greater value for investment over a longer period. Studies have revealed that solar LED street lights are capable of saving 50% more in maintenance and operation cost as compared to traditional lights.
- Expendable operation: The operation of street light is expandable due to which they can be easily installed in different areas of the city without requiring any additional resources or wire hardness. On the other hand, in order to install traditional lights, separate resources have to be provided in order to operate. Therefore, in this regard, there is a significant cost-benefit with LED street lights as compared to traditional lights.
Framework for making a cost analysis of solar LED street lights and traditional lights
In order to make a cost analysis of the Solar LED street lights and traditional lights, a standard framework has been provided in the section below using which people can make a cost analysis of any street light that they want to analyse for cost benefits. The steps involved in finding the operation cost of a street light is given as below:
- In the first step, calculate the overall consumption of the street light or a series of life that have been connected for achieving desired levels of illumination.
- In the second step, calculate the total consumption of the light during the one-day operation.
- Once the daily consumption of a single street light has been calculate then it can be used for calculating annual consumption of the street lights.
- In the last step, use the annual consumption of the street lights for calculating the actual cost that might incur in a particular reason for the operation of the street light. This cost will be dependent upon the rates that are applicable for electricity in different parts of the world.
For example, If a bulb of 250-watts operates for a period of 12 hours on a daily basis then overall energy that will be used by the bulb during daily operation will be = 12*250W = 3KW.hr.
The annual power consumption of the street light bulb will be = 365*3KW.hr = 1.095MW.hr
In case the cost of power is US$1 for 1 KW-hr then the cost of 1.095MW-hr would be = 1095kw-hr*1$/kw.hr = US$1,095.
On the other hand, due to the energy-saving capabilities of LED solar street lights, an LED light of 40-watts is capable of replacing a traditional lamp of 250 watts.
The energy consumption of a LED street light of 40watts will be = 40*12*365 = 0.175MW.hr
The total cost of energy for the operation of 40-megawatt LED street light for one year would be = US$175.
Hence, it can be analysed that solar LED street light cost benefits are significant as compared to traditional lights.
The LED solar street lights have significant cost-benefits as compared to traditional lights and these claims have been analysed by researchers. The solar street lights have 80% better energy-saving properties as compared to traditional lights while their operation and maintenance costs are negligible due to which they provide high savings value to the customers. The cost analysis of traditional and LED solar street lights show that their power consumption costs are much less as compared to traditional lights.