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Sustainable, smart lighting using individual controls

Construction; National Research Council Canada
Light Canada Expo - IIDEX Canada, September 21, 2012, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Light Canada/IIDEX 2012
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Exciting advances in lighting technologies will deliver a better future if we apply them intelligently, remembering what we already know about delivering good lighting quality. Among the more persistent questions has been whether providing better lighting has benefits for organizations. Over fifteen years of laboratory and field research enables our research group to answer “yes!” to this question. Laboratory research at NRC and elsewhere demonstrated that people prefer a mixture of direct and indirect lighting that lights the entire workspace and individual personal control over the local lighting level. Working in conditions that one personally prefers leads to the judgement that the space is attractive, better mood, and less visual and physical discomfort. Field investigations have taken this farther, showing that satisfaction with the lit environment predicts greater job satisfaction, greater organizational commitment, lower intent to turnover, and fewer health problems. Moreover, the (fluorescent) installation we studied used over 60% less energy than the system it replaced. These findings are notable because all of the workplace conditions studied are more than merely adequate. LED lighting systems offer the potntial to add individual or automatic controls over light source spectrum to the more familiar possibilities for local dimming, occupancy sensing, and daylight harvesting. Our research program has now turned to examining these possibilities as new control features for LED lighting that will enhance the attractiveness of this new technology; this presentation will include preliminary results. Smart lighting-featuring well-designed controls as well as the best light sources, luminaries, and designs --can benefit individuals, their employers, and the environment, thereby achieving a sustainable future.
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