Bauru is famous among Brazilians as the city where soccer superstar Pelé grew up. Today, Bauru is a busy college town and transportation hub located at the center of São Paulo, the country's most populous state and its economic engine. But Pelé isn't the only bright light the town will ever know. In June 2013, over 2,000 GE LED traffic lights made their mark on the municipality's traffic… and, in a very substantial way, on its budget.
“When we began looking, we had high standards for a solution that would maximize both energy savings and the quality of light,” said Marney Tadeu Antunes, commercial director for CPFL, Sao Paulo's utility provider. “GE's LED traffic lights will not only save us money, but they will improve the quality of our traffic signals.”
Low maintenance and high energy savings are just part of the larger picture. One key reason for selecting GE's LED signals was reduction of the “sun-phantom effect,” a frequent cause of false green or false red lights that can send a wrong signal to drivers, causing car accidents. “There is a large sloping avenue in Bauru, and by noon it was sometimes difficult to distinguish which color was indicated, or even if the light was on,” says Vailton Bessera, Specification Engineer from GE Lighting Brazil and project leader.
“With the new GTx™ LED signal, colors are easily distinguished,” Beserra says. The LED traffic lights send motorists and pedestrians a clear signal. “Our GTx™ LED traffic lights offer greater visibility and light uniformity, so it is easier to identify which color is indicated at any distance,” says Alexandre Ferrari, general manager for GE Lighting Brazil.
Results & Benefits
In terms of savings, the new GTx™ LED signals will reduce energy consumption by a stunning 80% over incandescent bulbs, and they will last 10 times longer. That, coupled with significant reductions on maintenance costs, is expected to save the city more than $2 million over their 10-year lifespan, making the traffic signals superstars in their own right among city managers. The key was educating the customer about the benefits of GE's specifications. “Our competitors offered cheaper products, but our GTx™ LED traffic lights are a world-class product, and we made sure that our client was aware of the full spectrum of advantages,” says Beserra.