We are creating some awesome events for you. Kindly bear with us.

Emergency lights connect devices in IoT-powered buildings

Smart building ecosystems are now possible thanks to a partnership between the University of New South Wales (UNSW) Sydney and an Australian company.

As reported, a wireless solution developed by the University is being used by an Australian company to roll out technology that would allow buildings to monitor themselves, react to their surroundings, follow instructions from afar, and even talk to smartphones.

EMIoT is a new wireless platform that relies on LED exit signs as the backbone of a low-power meshed network that covers 99.9% of a building.

It is far reaching as it covers underground carparks, pump systems and air conditioning.

WBS Technology, which is commercialising the technology, has installed it in more than 10 apartment complexes, with the latest being at Castle Hill in the north-west of Sydney.

The important step is to simply install the emergency lights. They all automatically connect to each other and that creates the network.

The emergency lights can then be networked with other devices via various wireless technologies, including Bluetooth.

This allows them to be controlled locally with a smartphone or via the internet from anywhere in the world.

Each exit sign or emergency light acts as a node in the network, passing information back and forth across a building.

Other devices can be connected to the network allowing all of them to be controlled and monitored remotely.

These devices include ventilation and pumping systems, security cameras and sensors, access doors to common areas and halls.

This technology is an example of the much talked about Internet of Things (IoT) networks.

IoT networks allow devices such as computers, lights, cars, and home appliances, among others to connect, interact and exchange data seamlessly with each other and across the internet.

What makes this technology different is how the company, an emergency lighting manufacturer in Sydney, is using the technology to transform itself into an entirely new business.

Instead of just making and selling emergency lights, it also offers ‘sensors as a service’.

For a fixed monthly fee, the company offers a network of emergency and other lights that monitor themselves, react to their surrounding and to remote commands, and can have other devices added to the same network.

As the network expands, energy usage and the status of heating and cooling could be tracked, flow gauges report back on water usage and identify leaks, ventilation and pumping systems monitored remotely, and hot water systems checked for faults.

Even residents trapped in an underground carpark would be able to communicate with building managers via an app.

The communication gateway looks like a standard exit sign, which relays other emergency lights communication to the cloud and acts like a normal exit sign. It is a plug-and-play system.

It can be installed in a new building or retrofitted into an older one.

The collaboration between the University engineers and the company began under the University’s TechConnect incubator program.

This led to an Australian Research Council Linkage project between the two.

It culminated in an Innovation Connections Grant funding the commercialisation of the technology developed by the University.

Researchers from the University’s School of Computer Science and Engineering worked on developing a meshed network of different communications technologies that could work seamlessly and provide a reliable network across a plethora of locations.

They eventually hit on a meshed combination of LoRa, which is used by wireless sensors for health care monitoring; 6LoWPAN, a new Internet protocol for small devices; and RPL, an experimental network protocol for point-to-point communications where stability and low data rates are an issue.

They then created a gateway that bridges the different technologies with cellular telecommunications networks, allowing it all to connect to computer servers in the cloud.

They then added Bluetooth to provide localised control via smartphones.

It is a great example of an enterprise with a technical challenge it needs to solve, and the University having the people with the knowledge and engineering smarts to find the solution.

Working with industry in this way was essential to get innovation out of laboratories and into the real world.


Qlik’s vision is a data-literate world, where everyone can use data and analytics to improve decision-making and solve their most challenging problems. A private company, Qlik offers real-time data integration and analytics solutions, powered by Qlik Cloud, to close the gaps between data, insights and action. By transforming data into Active Intelligence, businesses can drive better decisions, improve revenue and profitability, and optimize customer relationships. Qlik serves more than 38,000 active customers in over 100 countries.


CTC Global Singapore, a premier end-to-end IT solutions provider, is a fully owned subsidiary of ITOCHU Techno-Solutions Corporation (CTC) and ITOCHU Corporation.

Since 1972, CTC has established itself as one of the country’s top IT solutions providers. With 50 years of experience, headed by an experienced management team and staffed by over 200 qualified IT professionals, we support organizations with integrated IT solutions expertise in Autonomous IT, Cyber Security, Digital Transformation, Enterprise Cloud Infrastructure, Workplace Modernization and Professional Services.

Well-known for our strengths in system integration and consultation, CTC Global proves to be the preferred IT outsourcing destination for organizations all over Singapore today.


Planview has one mission: to build the future of connected work. Our solutions enable organizations to connect the business from ideas to impact, empowering companies to accelerate the achievement of what matters most. Planview’s full spectrum of Portfolio Management and Work Management solutions creates an organizational focus on the strategic outcomes that matter and empowers teams to deliver their best work, no matter how they work. The comprehensive Planview platform and enterprise success model enables customers to deliver innovative, competitive products, services, and customer experiences. Headquartered in Austin, Texas, with locations around the world, Planview has more than 1,300 employees supporting 4,500 customers and 2.6 million users worldwide. For more information, visit www.planview.com.


SIRIM is a premier industrial research and technology organisation in Malaysia, wholly-owned by the Minister​ of Finance Incorporated. With over forty years of experience and expertise, SIRIM is mandated as the machinery for research and technology development, and the national champion of quality. SIRIM has always played a major role in the development of the country’s private sector. By tapping into our expertise and knowledge base, we focus on developing new technologies and improvements in the manufacturing, technology and services sectors. We nurture Small Medium Enterprises (SME) growth with solutions for technology penetration and upgrading, making it an ideal technology partner for SMEs.


HashiCorp provides infrastructure automation software for multi-cloud environments, enabling enterprises to unlock a common cloud operating model to provision, secure, connect, and run any application on any infrastructure. HashiCorp tools allow organizations to deliver applications faster by helping enterprises transition from manual processes and ITIL practices to self-service automation and DevOps practices. 


IBM is a leading global hybrid cloud and AI, and business services provider. We help clients in more than 175 countries capitalize on insights from their data, streamline business processes, reduce costs and gain the competitive edge in their industries. Nearly 3,000 government and corporate entities in critical infrastructure areas such as financial services, telecommunications and healthcare rely on IBM’s hybrid cloud platform and Red Hat OpenShift to affect their digital transformations quickly, efficiently and securely. IBM’s breakthrough innovations in AI, quantum computing, industry-specific cloud solutions and business services deliver open and flexible options to our clients. All of this is backed by IBM’s legendary commitment to trust, transparency, responsibility, inclusivity and service.

Send this to a friend