Picking the right light


Getting the right kind of lighting is important for the energy efficiency of a building and the well-being of its occupants. Up to 40% of a building's electricity use is accounted for by lighting, while the right level and quality of light improves the alertness and accuracy of those working in it.

Experts note, if a lighting designer has been employed to do a design, perhaps by the project architect or interior designer, they would have selected particular brands and models for a good reason – and energy efficiency will always be an important factor. Yet, there have been many instances when specifications are being alternated, in most cases to save cost, which jeopardises the design intent. What should have been an inviting, well illuminated and efficient space can become a poorly lit, unappealing space that fails to accentuate and enhance the building or provide the operators and users with a successful, well-engineered project. 

Andrew Bunker, Regional Director, Middle East, Ecosense + Lumium says that there are many brands in the market that can publish product information that states similar dimensions, aesthetic, wattage and lumen output but it does not mean it will provide the same performance. “Unfortunately, lighting is a much more complex building component than many seem to really understand. I have seen so many new installations with lighting fixtures that have failed in the first year – and the cost of product replacement, site works, etc. can be extremely painful to manage,” he adds.

The developer of a housing estate may want to build a property quickly and to a particular budget, then on completion sell quickly to maximise the returns. “They will often install known brand sanitary ware and white goods because it gives the right first visual impression to the buyer but lighting can quickly be overlooked,” explains Bunker. 

Paul Nulty, Founder, Nulty +, goes on to add that it is key to note and consider what is being illuminated and why. “Lighting is a wonderfully intangible medium and can offer a lot more to a space, brand, and experience than a simply functional light. Light can be utilised to engage the user of the space as well as saving energy,” he sums up. 

Ways to improve your organisation's lighting:

Getting the lighting right is important for the energy efficiency of a building and the well-being of its occupants. Up to 40% of a building's electricity use is accounted for by lighting, while the right level and quality of light improve the alertness and accuracy of those working in it.

Ways to improve your organisation's lighting include:

Occupancy sensors: By dimming or switching off lighting when there is nobody in room occupancy sensors can reduce electricity use by 30%.
 
Daylight sensors: Adjusting the artificial lighting according to the amount of natural light in a room using daylight sensors or photocells can reduce electricity use by up to 40%.
 
Maintenance plan: By regularly cleaning windows and skylights you can reduce the need for artificial light. Cleaning the fixtures that contain lamps, known as luminaires, will improve their performance.
 

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