Park’s lighting responds to noise to beat vandals

THE LIGHTING in a public park in Austria has been fitted with acoustic sensors to respond to noise.

The innovative installation at the People’s Garden in Graz is designed to respond to anti-social behaviour at night and increase feelings of safety and security.

Top: If one of the two acoustic sensors picks up any noise at the People’s Garden in Graz, the fittings illuminate the area to 100 per cent. Middle: Thomas Rajakovics of the City of Graz with project manager Stefan Unterberger of Zumtobel Group Services Bottom: The park during the day.

Six outdoor luminaires, equipped with a combination of motion detectors and noise sensors, are dimmed to 20 per cent as standard. But as soon as one of the four fittings with a motion detector senses any kind of movement, the output is raised immediately to 50 per cent. If one of the two acoustic sensors picks up any noise, the fittings illuminate the area to 100 per cent.

This light level accompanies people on their journey through the garden when the sun goes down, as the luminaires in front of the individual light up whilst the ones behind are dimmed down again after a certain amount of time.

Any movement in the area can therefore be perceived straight away, helping people to feel safer.

The luminaires are controlled an intelligent web-based lighting controls system which activates the fittings via a radio module when the sensors detect noise or movement.

The accompanying software also displays the energy savings achieved by the new lighting solution, as the pilot project is currently saving around 60 per cent energy compared to the original luminaires. A nearby gateway enables communication between the luminaires and the web server.

The lights – Supersystem luminaires from Zumtobel – may become even more intelligent in the future, as the Graz authorities have the option to control the lighting centrally and remotely using dedicated software. This could be useful if, for example, the police are called in to deal with an incident in the park.

The control system – the InCity from Zumtobel – also supports the collection of additional information about factors such as noise levels, weather conditions and the movement of people.

Analysis of this data may eventually offer further useful opportunities.
‘This project has demonstrated how we can bring the park into the digital age – and, in doing so, actively maximise safety,’ the Mayor of Graz, Siegfried Nagl, told Lux. ‘There hasn’t been any vandalism in the park area since the new luminaires were installed.’


  • Innovative lighting control systems will be explored in the Safer Cities Conference which takes place on Wednesday 13 November and Thursday 14 November 2018 at the LuxLive exhibition at London ExCeL. For more information on the event, click HERE.