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DALI and wireless

UPDATES (April 2020):

Thread Group and DiiA collaborate to shape the future of IoT lighting for commercial buildings
>> View press release

Zigbee Alliance and DiiA collaborate to standardize DALI-Zigbee gateways
>> View press release

DALI lighting control and wireless communication

There are different options to combine wireless communication links with DALI lighting control, which traditionally uses a 2-wire bus.

One option is to use application gateways to translate between DALI and the wireless protocol of choice. Some example of gateways are shown below. Currently there is no standardization in this area.

The second option is to use an underlying wireless carrier to transport the DALI commands. This approach is specified in Part 104 of the IEC 62386 standard, which includes several wireless and wired transport alternatives to the conventional wired DALI bus system. Part 104 is not currently included in the DALI-2 certification program.

The DiiA Technical & Certification Work Group (T&C WG) has formed two new subgroups to investigate the different options for combining wireless with DALI. The subgroups are working in cooperation with appropriate partner organizations, including the Zigbee Alliance and the Thread Group. 

At this stage, no wireless protocols have been excluded from consideration.



At the DALI Summit in September 2019, Arnulf Rupp, chair of the DiiA Board, gave a presentation entitled, “Where does DALI fit in a wireless world? >> Download the presentation

As well as unveiling DiiA's wireless plans, the presentation reached the following conclusions:

  • DALI fits in a Wireless World in multiple ways.
  • There will not be ONE protocol dominating the world any time soon.
  • Standardized gateways will allow use of D4i in combination with established, multi-vendor ecosystems.
  • Native DALI has the opportunity to win important markets with its unique set of features combining wired and wireless on multiple carriers including IP-based carriers.


DiiA wireless subgroups

Wireless Gateways

This subgroup is discussing specifications for standardized application gateways between DALI-2 and existing wireless protocols such as Bluetooth mesh or Zigbee.
For each chosen gateway, the subgroup will develop specifications to describe which commands and data will be supported across the interface. Tests will be developed to allow certification.

Part 104 (DALI over Wireless)

This subgroup is discussing the implementation of DALI-2 over wireless carriers, in line with IEC 62386-104. This specification includes two underlying wireless protocols: Bluetooth mesh and UDP.
The subgroup will determine any additional requirements that are necessary to implement Part 104. Tests will be developed to allow certification.

All DiiA Regular members are invited to participate in all T&C WG activities, including the new Wireless subgroups.



Gateway example 1: Intra-luminaire DALI in outdoor lighting

Outdoor luminaires for street-lighting applications use DALI lighting control inside the fixture. Luminaires communicate with each other wirelessly, typically using proprietary protocols, via a network lighting controller device that acts as an application gateway between DALI and the wireless protocol. Gateways of this type are not standardized.

>> See the Georgia Power case study


Gateway example 2: Indoor luminaire connected by Bluetooth™ mesh

DALI track lighting is connected wirelessly via Bluetooth™ mesh to a central DALI controller. Send and receive devices mounted on the track act as application gateways to translate between DALI and Bluetooth™ mesh. The gateways are not standardized.

>> See the Silvair case study