Company: Detroit Zoo


Industry: Zoological Society

The Goal

The Detroit Zoo Operations Team wanted to reduce the Zoo’s energy consumption due to rising energy costs. They knew replacing their lights with LED fixtures would lower their electric expenses and quickly decided to make the switch. They partnered with an LED fixture manufacturer who advised the team to integrate lighting controls with their new LED lighting system to boost ROI and to enhance the ambience in some animal exhibits.

The suggestion was taken into consideration, but the Zoo needed a lighting controls solution that didn’t depend upon a wired network. Furthermore, the solution would have to work both indoors and outdoors, not to mention operate as expected in an environment filled with lots of people, animals, equipment, and thick concrete walls.

The Synapse Solution

After careful consideration, they selected SimplySNAP Lighting Controls. SimplySNAP Lighting controls feature a reliable wireless mesh network that could handle the complex environment.  This unique functionality enables optimal routing of signals between the controller and nodes—eliminating a single point of failure in the network.

More importantly, the SimplySNAP system made it easy to control the lights for the Zoo’s various needs.  From mimics sunrise and sunsets in exhibits, to controls lights for a lightshow.  SimplySNAP could handle it all, and it could do it from any mobile device or computer—making life even easier for the busy staff at Detroit Zoo.

The Results

The integration of Synapse Smart Lighting Controls boosted the ROI of the LED installation by another 20 to 30%. In the end, the Detroit Zoo used Synapse SNAP Smart Lighting Controls for:

  • The Pedestrian Path Lights and 80 “Ring of Fire” globes
  • Controlling the floods lights for the lightshow at the iconic, 150 foot tall Detroit Zoo Watertower
  • Dimming controls to simulate sunrise & sunset in the Great Apes of Harambee Habitats