We’ve seen tons of lighting projects that harness the sun’s energy, but none that respond to the other, oft-overlooked light source that graces our sky the other 12 hours of the day (or night, as the case may be). Civil Twilight Collective’s amazing Lunar Resonant Streetlightsystem is so ingenious that it was just named the grand prize winner of Metropolis’ Next Generation 2007 contest, which crowns one forward-thinking project as the most promising and innovative new idea (this year the competition focused on energy). The high-tech streetlight has an embedded ultra-sensitive photocell that responds to the changing brightness of moonlight, turning on and dimming as appropriate, cutting down on unnecessary light pollution while making evening strolls down Main Street more pleasant and energy-efficient.

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The San Francisco design collective’s trio (Christina Seely, Anton Willis, and Kate Lydon) installed a prototype at the San Francisco Herman Miller showroom during the award ceremony, where people could dim and brighten the lamp by waving their hands over the sensor. For more info about the project and the designers, check out the May issue of Metropolis. Civil Twilight will also be honored at ICFF at Metropolis’ Design Entrepreneurs: Rethinking Energyseminar on May 21st.

+ Civil Twilight Collective + Metropolis Magazine Next Generation 2007 Competition