The Chicago Department of Buildings recently announced that energy design requirements for building projects in Chicago have been updated as part of the city’s multi-phase code modernization process. For permit applications started on or after June 1, 2019, the Chicago Energy Conservation Code (Title 14N of the Municipal Code), based on the 2018 edition of the International Energy Conservation Code, published by International Code Council, Inc., will now apply.
This is the first post in a new series about essential commercial and architectural lighting terms. The terms, which will be presented in sets of five terms per post, are curated. The terms in this post: CRI (Color Rendering Index), Color Temperature, Bluetooth Mesh, Architectural Lighting and UL Vs. ETL Listing.
Talieh Ghane researches the interaction between light and health at the California Lighting Technology Center. We talked about the biological vs. visual system of light, how to synchronize your circadian clock for better health, how light is like a drug, and why you shouldn’t be on your phone right before bed (guilty).
Our relation to light as humans is complex. Though many of the effects of light on our biology are still unknown, there are several we know and understand. Light also plays a major role in regulating human biological responses, including our internal body clock or circadian rhythm.
The term Architectural Lighting encompasses three main factors. The first is the building’s aesthetic, which is crucial for any commercial, especially retail, environment. The second consideration is ergonomic or functional — any aspect which improves one’s ability to live, work, function, relax or play — to make the space easier to use. The third aspect involves the efficiency of energy, ensuring that light is properly, which is to say economically or optimally, used and distributed.
A color rendering index (CRI) is a quantitative metric of the ability of an artificial light source (i.e. LED, Fluorescent, Halogen, Incandescent, etc.) to accurately reveal the colors of a subject in comparison to a natural light source. A CRI of 90 means that the artificial light source is replicating roughly 90% of the visible color spectrum that the sun would produce on the same color.
It is a truth universally acknowledged that store dressing rooms are every woman’s worst nightmare. The number one complaint voiced by women and men everywhere is that the lighting is harsh, glaring and reminiscent of the dentist’s chair or perhaps a police interrogation room (“No, officer, I did not realize that pairing Converse with Versace was a crime against fashion”).
With rising land values and increasing income disparities, it seems that for many neighborhoods the prospect of gentrification is inevitable. Is there a way to “gentrify responsibly,” so communities and the people who live in them — no matter where they are on the financial spectrum — all come out ahead?
Unlike wireless lighting systems like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Mesh is designed for large collections of devices, numbering into the thousands. Switches, HVAC, sensors, light fixtures, and shades can communicate with each other by forwarding a message, or command, across all the devices in that Bluetooth chain until reaching the destination to perform said operation, (i.e. turn ON the 3rd floor office lights). The communication, instead of passing through your WiFi router, comes from the originating device and travels from light fixture to sensor, to AC unit, to any other chain of Bluetooth Mesh enabled devices, like a Bluetooth highway or a body’s central nervous system, until the command reaches the lights on the 3rd floor.
As architectural designs have digressed from symmetrical and parallel mirroring patterns that align with vaulted ceilings, grid axis, and more, linear lighting allows architects to highlight asymmetrical architectural features and lines (which is where the term “architectural lighting” comes from). The lighting design pattern of 2019 is no design pattern.
Whether you’re upgrading the lighting in your current office, or designing the office space of a new development project, it’s important to consider the advantages and disadvantages of LED Lighting. Here are 4 important points of analysis when considering LED Lighting to Fluorescent.
Architectural Lighting, as opposed to functional commercial or residential lighting is concerned with (spoiler alert) architecture, or furthering the design experience of buildings and other physical structures. Both residential and commercial lighting can also qualify as architectural lighting, though this isn’t always the case. Some lighting is primarily functional and/or exists in a space that no one would call “architectural.”
It’s widely known that lighting can affect one’s mood — hence the common term mood lighting. But the degree at which your mood is affected by lighting might surprise you. In 2014, the Journal of Consumer Psychology published a study that found the more intense the lighting, the more affected and the more intense the participants’ emotions were — both positive and negative.
Early in his architectural journey almost 70 years ago, now-renowned architect, educator, and urban planner Balkrishna Doshi made a quiet, powerful promise to himself in his diary, “It seems that I should take an oath and remember it for my life-time: to provide the lowest class with the proper dwelling.” And for the next six decades he lived up to his oath.
The latest California Non-Residential lighting regulation updates occurred in 2016. The updates to Title 24 included changes to required lighting controls. In a nutshell, areas that require multi-level lighting controls are now required to have either a vacancy sensor or a partial-ON occupancy sensor—this includes classrooms, offices <250 square feet, Multi-purpose rooms <1,000 square feet, and conference rooms.
There’s a lot to think about when it comes to lighting a museum gallery. On the technical design side, there are two main factors to consider: light color temperature, or the warmth or coolness of a light source, and the Color Rendering Index (CRI), or the system used to indicate relative color rendering ability.
The benefits of LEDs are well studied and documented. By now we know that it’s much healthier for humans to work, function, and operate in environments that are lit by LED lighting. Without a doubt, LED technology will continue to change how we light our environment and our world. So why then, are our students and teachers still spending a significant amount of their days in classrooms and schools under dull and dated fluorescent lights?
Often seen or touted as idealistic, zero-carbon cities are now seen as an obtainable goal by most local elected officials and becoming a goal of many cities across the world. Reaching net-zero emissions is considered a necessity for the future of the environment with many cities across the country currently working towards the goal of zero-carbon emissions, including Boston, Denver and Portland, Oregon, which all have committed to reducing energy use by 80% or more by 2050.
Even some of the world’s most stunning architectural masterpieces need a little help getting gussied up for the camera. It’s not that the light in the room itself is bad, in fact, the designer most likely executed everything in the room around light. But, when it comes to the lighting within interiors, it can get tricky when the camera comes into play.
When it comes to office lighting, most workplaces are faced with outdated systems that are wasting both money and energy. It’s a disappointing fact as extensive research has shown that office lighting plays a major role in the productivity of office workers. It’s been proven that LED lighting that mimics or compliments natural light leads to greater productivity amongst workers as well as having a significant affect on an individual’s happiness and circadian rhythm.
Have you ever had trouble falling asleep at 2am after binge watching the latest season of House of Cards? Ever pulled an all-nighter then felt strangely awake and alert after walking outside into broad daylight? Ever spent all day at the beach only to sleep like a moss-covered boulder later that night? It probably comes as no surprise that light has significant effects on the human body.
Humans are designed to function on a roughly 24-hour cycle of wakefulness and sleep. Light is one way that our bodies set the clock. Human-centric lighting design takes into account natural rhythms of light and dark, incorporating changes in lighting intensity and color temperature over the course of a 24 hour cycle.
Whether you’re upgrading the lighting in your home or you’re a lighting designer specifying fixtures for a commercial new-construction project, you’re probably concerned about the same things. Apart from staying within budget, you’re worried about having adequate lighting. Like most, you don’t want your home flooded with light but you also don’t want to be left with inadequate light.
It’s a fact — everyone loves to get out into the sun every once and a while. And as the weather continues to warm, we find staying inside harder than ever. But what if you could make the lighting in your office possess some of the health and feel-good benefits of sunlight? You can, with high-CRI LED Lighting and by designing a floor plan to include several sunroofs.
Occupancy Sensors automatically turn lights ON when motion is detected and automatically turn lights OFF when the space is vacant and motion is not detected for 15 minutes (timer selections generally vary from 15 min., 30 min. or 45 mins).