Designed for security: Bring light into safe and intelligent rooms


    Sumit Joshi portrait

    From Summit Joshi

    What does it take to fully recover from the effects of Covid-19? Certainly effective prevention and treatment, but there are also psychological and emotional aspects. People need to feel that their health is guaranteed in out-of-home environments and that they can trust the managers and operators of those environments to keep them safe and respond quickly to new problems as they arise.

    The disinfecting effect of UV-C
    Safe rooms begin with decontamination. And one powerful way to decontaminate the places we inhabit, from offices to shops to public transportation and beyond, is through the use of UV-C (UV-C) light. UV-C is also useful against SARS-CoV-2.

    The challenge is to use UV-C safely for people – and this is where lighting control comes into play. Automatic disinfection lights recognize when a room has become empty, disinfect the area and at the same time ensure the necessary protective measures in the event of motion detection.

    Manage space efficiently and securely
    Under pandemic conditions, the more space each of us has and the more consciously we occupy it, the safer we are. Here, too, IoT technology can play a role. In the Covid-19 era, it is important to find a job in an uncrowded part of a building. Having a color-coded map on a smartphone showing an employee where the crowded parts of the office are is not only convenient, but can also be life-saving. And thanks to the data, different areas of an office can be efficiently exposed to different disinfection regimes depending on the intensity of use.

    Data can also contribute to safer office design. In places where more people gather, stronger ventilation systems or additional windows can be installed.

    A new future for stationary retail
    Smart tech can also play a big role as brick and mortar retailers recover from the pandemic. Tracking applications can help store managers keep the number of shoppers at a safe level without having to make guesswork or station staff at the door with counters and hand sanitizer. Orientation applications that load custom cards onto buyers’ phones can lead them directly to the items they are looking for and then quickly get them out of the store to be on the safe side.

    And just like in the office, data will improve the physical layout of branches – again in the interest of containing the spread.

    New trends in healthcare and beyond
    Although teleconsultation and non-contact methods in healthcare have diagnosed people without forcing them into clinics, hospitals, and other places where they can infect or infect others, automated fever screening kits can measure workers’ temperatures as they enter buildings. Geofencing technologies can help maintain the necessary quarantine regimes. Automated “access control corridors” will disinfect people and monitor their health when they enter shared rooms.

    Indeed, if there was a “bright side” to this crisis, it is to show that human ingenuity is not helpless against it. As technology has generally grown to cope with the Covid-19 challenge – for example, by enabling a largely successful transition to working from home – IoT applications in particular can point the way out of the lockdown era towards a more secure and resilient future.

    The author is CEO & MD, Signify Innovations – South Asia (formerly Philips Lighting)

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