Ideas / / Commercial Solar 101

Commercial Solar 101

Posted in: | July 25, 2022

Commercial lights create a safe, welcoming environment wherever installed, creating ambiance in various public settings. It has shown that proper lighting may reduce crime and vandalism significantly.

However, traditional AC and gas lighting solutions may be complex, high-cost projects to install and maintain with ongoing monthly energy bills. Commercial solar lights offer businesses, parks, and other high-traffic pedestrian areas a hassle-free, bright, durable lighting solution with minimum installation and no monthly energy costs. Moreover, solar advancements in recent years have allowed commercial-grade solar lights to offer aesthetically pleasing lighting options.

Commercial Solar 101: Different Commercial Solar Lights for Different Applications

Depending on your commercial light needs, you may require different commercial solar lights. When assessing which type of commercial solar lights are needed, ask yourself these questions:

• What type of area do you need to light? (e.g., an entrance, pedestrian pathway, a community, a specific spot, etc.)

• Does it need to stay on or be activated by motion?

• Do you need the light to be on from dusk to dawn or do you need it to shut off at a certain time? Are there any specific requirements for Foot Candles or Lux? (for more on Foot Candle and Lux see our Commercial Grade Solar Lights: Guide to Watts, Lumens and Foot Candles – Part 1)

• Do you want warm light or bright light?

• Should you go with a traditional or a modern look?

The answers to these questions can guide you towards which commercial solar light is needed for your neighborhood, park, campground, or any other commercial space. With no electrical wiring, digging, trenching, or running gas lines, commercial solar lighting is the ideal lighting solution in commercial spaces.

Commercial Solar 101: Challenges of Traditional Lighting

The ‘go-to’ approach to lighting a commercial space has typically been traditional lighting sources. However, traditional lighting has some disadvantages, which we will discuss more as we delve further into this blog. Achieving brightness and durability in commercial spaces with traditional lighting solutions can be costly. In addition, complicated and expensive to install and maintain.

When installing traditional AC lights, there are several factors to consider, other than the cost of the light fixtures themselves. The cost of trenching, wiring, fixture installation, and an electrical board are all added expenses. 

On top of the cost of getting these lights up and running, loss usage should be factored in. Loss usage refers to the amount of time a commercial area cannot be used due to this extensive electrical work being done. This is not the case with outdoor solar lights.  Lastly, ongoing energy bills for traditional commercial lighting systems are a significant cost factor to consider. Commercial solar lighting harnesses the power of the sun to light up your commercial applications by converting sunlight into free energy. This free energy offers cost savings that will lower the operating costs of businesses and public municipalities, while also relying on a more sustainable energy solution than traditional commercial lighting systems.

Commercial Solar 101: Outdated Perceptions of Solar Lighting 

When people envision solar lighting, they might have an outdated image of what commercial solar lighting can be. Perhaps their idea of solar lighting is bulky with unattractive huge solar panels separate from the light fixture. This may not be an aesthetically pleasing solution and does not do the commercial lighting application any favors. 

Gama Sonic solar lights are indisputable proof commercial solar lighting has made significant strides over the past few years. Outdoor solar lights no longer must be an eye sore. Gama Sonic commercial solar lighting has proprietary technology that uses the solar panels as part of the light fixture itself. The result is a beautifully designed, durable, bright, commercial-grade solar lighting to light up your communities.

Commercial Solar 101: Main Benefits of Commercial Solar Lighting

Now that we have overcome the outdated image of solar lighting that may come to mind. Let’s explore the main benefits commercial solar lighting provides as well as debunk some concerns that may remain.

Commercial solar lighting benefits include:

  • Cost-efficient installation: NO wiring, digging, or trenching (no down-time or loss-usage)
  • Cost-efficient maintenance: NO monthly energy bills
  • Easy replacement of old AC electrical infrastructure
  • Introducing a more sustainable energy solution to communities

Some commercial solar lighting misconceptions include the solar lighting not being bright enough, the length of time it remains lit, in regards, to the demands of your commercial property, unpredictable weather conditions preventing proper solar charge, and the light fixture and components not being durable enough.

Although we will dive deeper into addressing these concerns in the “Advanced Commercial Solar Lighting Concepts Explained: Staying Lit Through Bad Weather Conditions”, we can easily debunk these beliefs in this blog. In reality, Gama Sonic outdoor solar lights may illuminate the surface with up to 2X-3X brightness vs. typical requirements (see our Commercial Grade Solar Lights: Guide to Watts, Lumens and Foot Candles – Part 2) and can last up to 4-10 nights of light on a single full charge (depending on the light and the light mode setting). Our LED solar light bulbs last 10+ years and our batteries can last up to 5.5 years with a simple DIY replacement when needed.

Commercial Solar 101: How Solar Lights Work

The main components that make solar lighting work are:

Solar panel

PCB (Printed Circuit Board)

Battery

Bulb or LED light

The solar panel is made of smaller units called solar cells. The most common solar cells are made from silicon, a semiconductor that is a very abundant element on earth. In a solar cell, crystalline silicon is interposed between the conductive layers.

The PCB is the light’s ‘computer.’ It is a laminated sandwich structure of conductive and insulating layers. PCBs have two complementary functions. The first is to affix electronic components and the second is to provide reliable electrical connections between the component’s terminals in a controlled manner.

The battery holds the charge and provides the energy to the LED lights, while the LEDs emits the light. When solar lights are charging, UV rays hit the solar panels, which holds the energy. The PCB distributes the stored energy from the solar panel to the battery. After the light is charged, the PCB routes and manages the energy from the battery to the LED lights and controls how much energy is distributed to the LEDs.

Commercial Solar 101: Not All Solar Lights Are Created Equal

It is important to note that not all solar lights are created equal.

Solar panel types: there are Crystalline vs. Amorphous solar panels. Amorphous is the type of solar panel you can find on a calculator. It requires a lower amount of light but twice as much surface area for the same power output as a monocrystalline panel.

Solar panel protection: there is Tempered glass vs. Epoxy covers. Tempered glass will prolong the life of the solar panel and increase the level of charging efficiencies. After some time in the sun, an epoxy cover may turn “yellowish,” reducing its charging efficiency.

Solar panel size: the larger the panel, the more energy it “collects.”

PCB – the solar lights brain: when it comes to the PCB, design has a significant role in how efficient and optimized a solar light is, but there is no standardized way of how PCBs are built or what they can deliver. The PCB is the hardware and software of the light, controlling the performance of the light, the light’s duration, and brightness. It is responsible for prolonging the lifespan of the LEDs and batteries and achieving the most efficient operation. How well a PCB is designed has influence in the solar light’s overall performance.

Batteries. The Ampere and Volt will determine how much charge the battery can hold and as a result how long the light can stay on. However, not all batteries are the same. There are Lithium-ion or Lead Acid batteries. Lead acid would take 10+ hours to charge while lithium-ion can charge in as little as 3 hours or less. Lithium-ion offers constant power, whereas lead acid dissipates over time.

Gama Sonic Commercial Solar Lights Offer a Superior Experience

Gama Sonic’s commercial solar lighting innovation is superior to traditional solar lighting sources.

All Gama Sonic solar lighting is cost-efficient, offering a more sustainable energy solution with easy installation, maintenance free and no ongoing energy costs. 

Gama Sonic commercial solar lights are durable, made of a cast aluminum frame, and are rust resistant and weather resistant with a 5-year warranty.

• Gama Sonic solar lights are aesthetically pleasing thanks to our proprietary “Morph” technology, in which the solar panels are integrated within the light fixture. This allows beautiful light fixtures without separate solar panels and an optimized charging surface that maximizes the charging efficiency. Our LED lights will light up to 50,000 hours, which is 10+ years of light.

• Gama Sonic uses LiFePO4 batteries, a Lithium-ion battery which can provide up to 2,000 charging cycles (more than 5 years of operation) and can easily be replaced when needed.

• We use state of the art, highly efficient PCBs (the light’s computer) to optimize energy consumption, which prolongs the life of the light’s components, distribute energy efficiency, and maximize the lights duration and brightness to the light’s application. 

For a more in-depth review on these benefits and Gama Sonic innovations, see the Gama Sonic Commercial Lighting Innovations blog.

The bottom line is, Gama Sonic offers high-quality commercial grade solar lighting that is beautifully designed and built to last for an extended period.

Contact us to learn more and discuss what type of Gama Sonic commercial solar lighting is right for your needs.

The commercial series solar lights by Gama Sonic provides a superior experience with bright, durable, maintenance free and cost-effective lighting solutions with no electrical wiring, digging, trenching, or running gas lines, saving you time and money. Complete the form and one of our commercial solar lighting managers will contact you to discuss your needs.

Related Posts

How Solar Security Lights can Improve Your Home’s Safety

UPDATE – Originally posted October 16, 2019 When planning outdoor lighting solutions for your home, safety should be a priority. You want your family and guests to feel safe and comfortable when walking to and from the house at night. ...
MORE
Gama Sonic Solar Lighting How To Maintain Solar Light During Winter Months

Winter Solar Lights: How to Maintain Your Solar Lights in the Cold Months

UPDATE – Originally posted February 21, 2018 Winter solar lights work perfectly even in snow and ice as long as they get enough sunlight each day to fully charge. One major benefit of purchasing and installing outdoor solar lamps and ...
MORE
How to Replace an Electric Post Light with a Solar Post Light

How to Replace an Electric Post Light with a Solar Post Light

UPDATE – Originally posted October 19, 2020 Going From Electric Outdoor Lighting to Solar: A How-To Guide So, you’ve decided to replace an electric post light and upgrade to solar light. Congratulations! You’re on a path to sustainability, affordability, and ...
MORE