Big advances in the world of DALI


DALI a communication protocol that was first introduced to replace 1-10v & DSI control and in simple terms was used to effectively talk to a light fitting (turn it on/off dim it up/down, while getting feedback of the lights status), has been constantly evolving and has recently gone through some major upgrades in the form of DALI-2.

Some of the standout features of DALI-2:

Standardisation & Inclusion of DALI input devices

 DALI Switch

DALI-2 as part of the IEC standard and as a DiiA(Digital Illumination Interface Alliance) technical specification now includes the use of input devices (sensors, switches, PE cells etc.) that are wired to the DALI line. The new standard allows for up to 64 ballasts along with 63 input devices to be wired on the same DALI line (limited by 250mA current capacity).

With the introduction of this standard you can be assured that if you specify a DALI-2 input device it will be fully compatible with any other certified DALI-2 system.


DALI Certification Process

With DALI-2 comes a much more stringent certification and testing process. Manufacturers will need to follow a more detailed and comprehensive testing procedure and all test results will need to be independently verified by the DiiA. This change will significantly improve multi-vendor interoperability compared to the previous version of the DALI standard.

On top of this the DiiA will be vigorously policing the use of their trademark to ensure manufacturers are not just labelling their products with the DALI logo and all certified products will be listed on the DiiA website for individuals to verify a manufacturers claims.

Direct power usage monitoring

Direct power usage monitoring has been adopted by the DiiA (DT51) and is currently undergoing the process of being adopted as an IEC standard. This addition will provide excellent analytics of power usage down to an individual fitting and will provide huge opportunities for building tuning as you will be able directly see the impact of changes made to things like sensor timeouts, light levels, daylight harvesting etc. The power usage will be reported back to the application controller across the DALI line.

DALI Wireless

With so many boutique wireless systems popping up, DALI wireless will bring some calm to a somewhat confused market.

DALI wireless has now been adopted as a standard by the IEC (62368-104) and is currently pending adoption by the DiiA as test sequences and certification processes are finalised.

It is expected that in the very near future the major Ballast manufacturers will offer native DALI wireless support and there will be small modules available to change any standard DALI fitting into a DALI wireless fitting. Better yet a DALI wireless fitting will appear in the software the same as any standard DALI fitting and you will be able to mix and match on a project to suit your requirements. Some of the leading controls manufacturers have already started developing DALI wireless sensors, panels and etc and we expect to see a number of products ready for sale early 2020.

To learn more about DALI-2 or to discuss how we can help with the design of a lighting control system to suit your needs please contact us.