NTU Singapore Scientists Develop Smart Daylight Collection Device (2 photos + video)

The experimental device is sufficientcompact and consists of an acrylic ball, a single optical fiber for transmitting sunlight to the desired location and electric motors controlled by electronic sensors.

The device is above the ground and the acrylic ballworks as a concentrator of sunlight, allowing parallel beams of sunlight to focus on the desired location. The focused sunlight is then collected at one end of the fiber optic cable and transmitted through it to the end that is underground. In the next step, light is emitted directly through the end of the fiber optic cable.

Compact motors using computercontrol systems automatically adjust the position of the collecting end of the fiber to optimize the amount of sunlight that can be received and carried as the sun moves across the sky.

The prototype developed by the researchers weighs 10kg and has a total height of 50 cm. To protect the acrylic ball from environmental influences, ultraviolet radiation and dust, the researchers also created a 3 mm thick transparent domed cover from polycarbonate. More detailed technical characteristics of the device are not provided.

Singapore authorities are planning in the near futureto increase the number of underground premises due to the rise in land prices. As a result, any technologies that can reduce the cost of lighting such premises will always be in demand and will receive government support. The inventors at NTU stated that the smart lighting fixtures that collect focused sunlight do not require complex equipment and can easily be mass-produced for further integration into urban infrastructure.

Source: ntu