Solar lighting: the smart city solution

10 reasons why you should choose solar lighting / Tuesday, April 16th, 2019

Is off-grid lighting the solution for tomorrow’s smart city? Fonroche is stepping up to the challenge with our unique solar technology. Towns, cities and rural communities around the world are opting for solar lighting solutions. When will you make the transition?

The smart solution for smart cities

What exactly is a smart city?

Everyone’s talking about ‘smart cities’, but what does it actually mean? First, a bit of background. The world’s population is growing exponentially. Today, just over 50% of people live in urban areas. By 2050, it will be 70%. As cities expand and become more congested, they’re having to make changes to improve living standards and get ‘smarter’ in areas like transportation and the environment. In short, a smart city is a connected city that’s evolving to meet the needs of the present while preserving resources for the future.

What if technology worked in harmony with ecology? Open data is helping drive sustainable development by capturing the information needed to save energy. Here, smartphones will have a key role to play in a more sustainable future. Wouldn’t you love to live in an optimally improved environment, with clean air and where everything’s designed to make life better?

Solar lighting for smart cities

Urban public lighting is a key component of any smart city. The French lighting association (AFE) estimates that 80% of the country’s infrastructure will need to be upgraded to environmentally friendly smart lighting to meet European regulations. To drive down carbon emissions and operating costs, an energy transition is needed.

Fonroche off-grid solar streetlights are an increasingly attractive proposition for local authorities. Their ecological performance is exactly in line with the requirements of a smart city. They get their power from a completely green resource, which means they don’t emit any CO2, and they deliver uninterrupted lighting 365 nights a year. Plus, their sleek design blends seamlessly with modern, more sustainable cityscapes.

Fonroche Connect: the smart connected solar streetlight


To manage solar streetlights with optimal efficiency, the Fonroche R&D teams have designed a remote connectivity tool called Fonroche Connect. It’s specially adapted for Fonroche solar solutions and allows remote, real-time control of public streetlights. The tool lets you monitor and troubleshoot your network of individually geolocated streetlights with extremely long-range connectivity, thanks to the LoRaTM wireless radiocommunication protocol. The objective is to ensure perfectly controlled, uninterrupted lighting throughout the year.

Smart cities need this kind of connected technology, which is designed to improve safety and security for people and protect the environment.

Sustainable safety for pedestrians in Jonchery-sur-Vesle

Pedestrian walkway lit by our solar solution


In the Marne area in northeastern France, the pedestrian walkway along the road into the village of Jonchery-sur-Vesle is now lit by Fonroche off-grid solar streetlights. This eco-friendly solution has improved safety along the walkway and cycle path, which leads to a busy cluster of shops and services. Previously, this section didn’t have any lighting, creating safety and security issues after sundown.

The local authority opted for a smart lighting solution, which meets the needs of today while acting for tomorrow. It stands as a bright-shining showcase of Jonchery-sur-Vesle’s commitment to good environmental citizenship. Plus, the powerful and controlled illumination provided by the Fonroche solution means fewer lighting points were needed.

This project was conducted with UGAP, France’s central purchasing agency for local authorities, which has been offering Fonroche solar streetlights for several years. Jonchery-sur-Vesle had a real need for lighting along this section and opted for a turnkey solution.