Implemented in 6 different cities in Israel, the SOLIS Daylight Collector technology was adopted in a public kindergarten building owned by the municipality in Ramat-Gan near Tel Aviv - the Moria Religious Public Kindergarten - in March 2022.
In the scope of a partnership with the local municipality official contractor that was in charge of the renovation of the building, the company (Solight) installed a 'solar collector' together with an automated control of the electric lighting system in order to ensure that through the day Solight’s natural lighting system remains the primary source of light and that the electric lighting become secondary and used only if the natural lighting intensity is not sufficient.
The majority of buildings in Israel use fluorescent light bulbs. On top of that, this kindergarten building was poorly lit due to various architectural reasons. It has only two windows, located on one side of the building. The opportunity to capture more natural light was made possible because the building operates only during day time when kids are inschool. Since the region is sunny more than 300 days of the year, natural day light solutions were an easy option, and when Solight cannot bring enough light - a system that will turn on artificial light kicks in.
As part of the installation planning, Solight performed a dispersion map study to understand where the natural light came from on top of the kindergarten, in order to optimise the placing of the system to concentrate its effect on the darker sides of the room.
The SOLIS Daylight Collector was installed during the renovation made to the central play area of the building in March 2022. It was designed with two natural light exit points to get equal dispersion over a large central play area of 70 square meter area of the building.
The collector was installed in one day once the pieces were available. The building was already being renovated - the installation was timed properly only to take apart some lower ceiling elements, at the same time as the installation of all lighting systems including the artificial ones.
The system is static, hence nothing can break down through wear and tear. The system is basically a large optical periscope, resulting in a 20 years lifetime period.
Maintenance fee is nothing significant, as it is only recommended to clean glasses annually or bi annually, glasses that are easy to reach and require only water to get the dust off the collector.
Solight plans to offer a cleaning service in their business model in the near future.
The Solis system replaces for at least 20 years the equivalence of daytime electrical lighting of 21 fluorescent light bulbs costing 50 EUR each and consuming 40 W to provide 30,000 lumens over 70 square meters of building.
Total Budget: 5,000 EUR for the complete system
Financing: Municipality of Ramat-Gan (public) via a contract with a general contractor.
Return on Investment of 7 years - with benefits calculation over 20 years (installation lifetime)
Avoided Costs 4,200 EUR Replacement of Luminaries
Energy Saving 7,642 EUR Of electricity and AC cooling load
Opex reduction 3,400 EUR Maintenance
Total savings 15,242 EUR
Natural lighting plays an important role to realise Healthy Buildings - and thus shortening pay-back time.
The teacher at the school was delighted with the experience : “Since Solight installed the new natural lighting system in my classroom, I stopped having sleeping problems. I used to wake up every night at 3 am and could not fall asleep again, and had less energy to work. Now that I am exposed to natural daylight throughout the day, my life has changed.”
“The effect of natural light on the kids is calming - they become more cooperative, The only change made in the renovations relating to the indoor quality was the installation of Solight natural lighting system, therefore we know for certain that it provided a positive impact.”
Funding is centralized for school buildings renovations in Israel, meaning it is the Department of Education that decides when, where and how much is given to renovation plans. In one project in Eilat, Solight won a tender for new Israeli technologies in emission reductions, winning a 50% subsidy from government funding for the project.
The municipality has a policy of renovating buildings throughout the year - not just during summer vacation. Children are evacuated during the renovation, hence there is a very short time window of 3-4 weeks to renovate a building from ceiling to floor.
Solight had a contact with the architect designing the renovation of this project and was introduced to the municipality which was impressed by the ground-breaking but fairly simple technology. They decided in only one week to go ahead with the project. In just three weeks everything was ready for installation.
Solis is now in the process of becoming official suppliers of the municipality.
Next steps with the city > the general idea is to agree on a deployment plan with the Education department of the municipality as they have a renovations scheme in place and many poorly lit buildings.
The total investment for the installation of SOLIS natural lighting system in the Kindergarten was 8,000 Euros. The investment price is expected to decrease with volume production. Currently SOLIS Max is priced at 5,000 EUR and the target price by increasing volumes is 3,500 EUR.