DOE has published the first part of a study to explore the energy reporting capability of commercially marketed Power over Ethernet (PoE) connected lighting systems. The new report provides a brief background on the development of the various PoE technologies, ranging from standards-based to proprietary, and illustrates the convergence of PoE power sourcing capabilities and LED luminaire power requirements. It then classifies PoE system devices in relationship to how they're used in systems — introducing clarifying terminology as needed — and briefly describes different PoE system architectures implemented by various lighting manufacturers. A discussion of existing standards and specifications that address energy reporting is provided, and existing test setups and methods germane to characterizing PoE system energy reporting performance are reviewed.

Connected lighting systems that can report their own energy consumption can deliver increased energy savings over conventional lighting solutions by facilitating data-driven energy management. PoE technology — in which a single Ethernet cable is used to both provide low-voltage DC power and enable network communication — has the potential to bring this capability to mainstream lighting applications, and has become increasingly viable for LED lighting.

For a closer look at the findings, download the full report.