How does human centric lighting enhance commercial design?
Text: Kunal Sharma, Founder & CEO, Flipspaces, Mumbai
Human-centric lighting (HCL) in commercial design prioritizes creating visually appealing spaces while enhancing occupant well-being and productivity. Unlike traditional lighting systems, it supports the biological, emotional, and visual needs of individuals in indoor environments. It recognizes the influence of light on human health and well-being, particularly in regulating circadian rhythms, the body’s internal clock that governs various physiological processes.
This internal clock is influenced by external factors, with light being one of the most important. Exposure to natural light during the day and darkness at night regulates our sleep-wake cycle, hormone production, and overall mood. To effectively implement HCL, several components must be considered:
- Color Temperature: HCL systems utilize different color temperatures throughout the day to mimic natural light. Cool white light in the morning promotes alertness, while warmer light in the evening signals the body to wind down.
- Intensity Control: HCL allows for dynamic adjustment of light intensity, ensuring that the lighting levels align with the specific tasks and activities being performed.
- Dynamic Lighting: HCL systems can simulate the dynamic changes in light intensity and color temperature that occur naturally outdoors, creating a more engaging and comfortable environment.
Benefits of human-centric lighting in commercial design
- By aligning the lighting conditions with the natural rhythm of the human body, HCL positively impacts the well-being and mood of individuals. Exposure to appropriate light levels and color temperatures regulates sleep patterns, reduces fatigue, and enhances overall mood and productivity.
- Studies show that proper lighting significantly improves cognitive performance and productivity. HCL systems that provide optimal lighting conditions throughout the day help individuals stay focused, alert, and energized, leading to increased efficiency and better work outcomes.
- Human-centric lighting considers the visual needs of individuals, ensuring that the lighting conditions are comfortable and suitable for various tasks. By reducing glare, shadows, and eye strain, HCL promotes a visually comfortable environment, which can contribute to better concentration and task performance.
- HCL systems adapt to the changing needs of the space and its occupants. With programmable controls, users can adjust the lighting conditions based on specific requirements, such as different work tasks, collaborative activities, or relaxation periods.
Implementing human-centric lighting in commercial spaces
- Before implementing an HCL system, one must assess the specific needs and preferences of the space’s occupants. This can be done through surveys, interviews, and observations to gain insight into their daily routines, tasks, and lighting preferences.
- To ensure the successful integration of human-centric lighting into commercial design, one must collaborate with experienced lighting designers and experts. These professionals provide expertise in designing and installing an HCL system tailored to the requirements of the space.
- HCL systems are designed to work in conjunction with daylight, transitioning between artificial and natural light sources throughout the day. This integration not only enhances the visual and physiological benefits but also reduces the reliance on artificial lighting during daylight hours.
- To maximize the effectiveness of HCL systems, one must utilize smart controls and sensors. These technologies enable automatic adjustments of lighting levels and color temperatures based on occupancy, time of day, and ambient light conditions. By incorporating occupancy sensors, dimming controls, and daylight harvesting, energy efficiency is optimized while providing personalized lighting experiences.