Smart Lighting Spinoff Company Uses LEDs to Pinpoint Locations

Achievement date: 
2013
Outcome/accomplishment: 

A Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications ERC (LESA) spin-off company, ByteLight, has received $1.25 million in funding from individual and institutional investors led by VantagePoint Capital Partners. ByteLight will use the funding to build its team, deploy at pilot locations, and expand its ecosystem of lighting partners. The LESA ERC, headquartered at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, is an Engineering Research Center supported by the National Science Foundation.

Impact/benefits: 

ByteLight is building the platform for the next generation of indoor, location-based services. By transforming lighting into a data platform, ByteLight enables building owners and tenants to turn existing infrastructure into a valuable source of data and a means by which they can communicate to customers and employees indoors with pinpoint accuracy.

Explanation/Background: 

Former LESA students Aaron Ganick, Travis Rich, and Dan Ryan from Boston University formed ByteLight to leverage technologies that emerged from the LESA ERC. ByteLight is enhancing the commercial value of light-emitting diodes (LEDs) by turning them into more than just sources of illumination; they can now also serve as highly accurate locator beacons for many kinds of applications. As a result, the effort is helping to accelerate adoption of LED technology in the market.

“Accurate indoor positioning has been described as the ‘holy grail’ of location-based services,” said Ganick, who is a co-Founder of ByteLight. 

“The ByteLight platform makes it easy for shoppers to navigate retail stores and find products, manages and optimizes enterprise employee operations, turns mobile devices into tour guides within museums or other public buildings, and helps people find colleagues and booths while attending trade shows or other events—the applications for this technology are truly endless,” Ganick said.