Creating innovative, long-lasting roadway lighting

One forward-thinking company wanted long-lasting, energy-efficient lighting, and we helped deliver a product now lining highways worldwide. With a talented internal team of lighting experts in place, Lighting Science Group Corporation engaged Design Central because of our proven creativity and expertise in product design and engineering. We collaborated to create the Prolific line of next-generation LED roadway lights. They now line streets and highways around the world, and their design has had global impact on the lighting industry.

  • Lighting Science Group
  • Commercial
  • Strategy
  • Product Design
  • Engineering
  • Prototyping
  • User Experience

Objective: Long-lasting and cost-effective LED roadway lights that would marry new technology with a familiar user experience.

Understanding install experience informs strategy

Understanding who installs the traditional high-intensity discharge (HID) roadway lights—and how—was a crucial first step in our design strategy. The technology and functionality needed to be modernized, but the install experience had to be familiar to the maintenance crews. Design Central strategized around how to emulate that user experience. We also focused on design for manufacturing assembly (DFMA) to know how the new lights would be made, and we remained committed to helping Lighting Science keep their tooling investment low by creating a product that wouldn’t require a heavy introduction of new tools.

Engineering delivers cost-effective LED lighting that lasts

LED lighting comes with a higher price tag up front but a promise to save money over time through longevity and maintenance reduction. So our design and engineering teams had to deliver on a light that would last. They did that by putting a heavy focus on heat transfer, using a chimney effect to keep the lights cool, and flipping the normal ribbing seen along the top of most roadway lights to the inside, preventing dirt and debris from getting lodged in the cracks. And we included Bluetooth capabilities so each unit could communicate. Engineering analytics confirmed the lights would deliver in all expected environmental conditions. And analytics and custom optical design solutions ensured that the design met all agency compliance requirements.

Functional prototypes and more support client sales

As a start-up, LSGC’s sales team had to work hard to gain market acceptance and traction, even before the actual products were available. Throughout our highly collaborative process, we supported their sales team with visualizations: We created renderings of the product on the city streets of the municipalities they were selling to, crafted sales brochures and made preproduction prototypes for the company to showcase at Light Fair. The result? The Prolific roadway light has been installed successfully across the globe and helped position LSGC as an up-and-comer in the world of commercial digital lighting.