City streets are often glaringly bright despite the fact that no-one’s there. Can you imagine how much energy is wasted? That’s why Kawantech created the Kara project in partnership with the city of Toulouse. The principle is that a small motion sensor is built in to street lamps, transforming them into smart lighting. They can detect movement from up to 35 metres away, determine whether it is a pedestrian, car or bike, and change the light levels in response. The result: not too dark, not too bright – it’s public lighting in energy-saving mode!
Since 2017, this sensor has been helping not only individuals but also vehicles – Kara now measures vehicles’ behaviour and optimises its response.

Following two years of testing in partnership with street lamp manufacturers, Kara won in the ‘Low-carbon city’ category at the 2016 EDF Pulse Awards – resounding confirmation of their idea, or at least a fantastic springboard! More than 650 Kara sensors have already been installed over 24 km of Toulouse’s streets. Other major cities, such as Paris, Lyon, Marseille, Bordeaux, Strasbourg and Montpellier have also begun testing or adopting the idea. Kawantech has also expanded internationally into markets such as Luxembourg and Brazil. The aim is to have 10,000 smart street lights by the end of 2018.

In May 2018, Citelum and Kawantech signed a contract for the joint development and resale of mobility assistance solutions.

  • €2M

    from partners since 2011

  • 70%

    energy savings

    in streets fitted with Kara lighting

  • 300M

    street lamps

    worldwide will help to improve mobility

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Currently made up of 14 people, the team is primarily formed of PhD-level experts and engineers specialising in signal processing, electronics, production and energy modelling. With plans to add seven posts in mid-2018, Kawantech will finish the year with 21 employees.

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