Dynamic lighting

Slow cyclical changes in intensity are beneficial to human mood. A simple automatic system of gradual changes in intensity can improve the perceived quality of space – the changes are similar to those caused naturally by slow-moving clouds. The dynamic part basically means that the lighting is able to change its qualities – illuminance, colour or even angle at which the light hits the eye – over a given period of time based on direct or indirect control mechanisms.

The goal is to, again, provide optimum level of comfort for a given environment and purpose. The secondary benefit is that in some applications of dynamic lighting energy saving can be achieved by e.g. dimming of light. Light sources working below their maximum can also enjoy longer lifespan, adding to the savings.

Dynamic lighting

 

Daylight simulation is just one of the applications of dynamic lighting. Even if we don't plan to change colour or angle of lighting, slow cyclical changes in intensity are still beneficial to human mood. A simple automatic system of gradual changes in intensity can improve the perceived quality of space – the changes are similar to those caused naturally by slow-moving clouds. The dynamic part basically means that the lighting is able to change its qualities – illuminance, colour or even angle at which the light hits the eye – over a given period of time based on direct or indirect control mechanisms.

The goal is to, again, provide optimum level of comfort for a given environment and purpose. The secondary benefit is that in some applications of dynamic lighting energy saving can be achieved by e.g. dimming of light. Light sources working below their maximum can also enjoy longer lifespan, adding to the savings.

The simplest way of affecting lighting is by dimming, which in its basic application lowers voltage for the light sources, decreasing their luminous flux. Newer light sources require more complicated approach, where voltage stays the same but current is adjusted. Diming can be done for different purposes: to decrease eye strain, allow for other source of light to take prominence – a projector or a TV, for example – or simply to provide a base level of illumination intensity necessary for security cameras to function.

More sophisticated dynamic lighting systems usually require a certain level of automation: color mixing via RGB LED elements calls for either a remote control or a pre-programmed sequence to be run. The dynamic colour effects are specifically a domain of LED, more traditional types of light sources are unable to mix their spectrum in a smooth way.

The dynamic lighting allows for dynamic use of the rooms: for example, different ways of illumination can be set up for a room that is used both as a leisure space and a home office. The office use calls for correct illumination of the workspace and biologically accurate replacement or addition to natural light. The leisure activities can then do with warmer, more subdued lighting in preparation for sleep. In small apartments with multiple different uses the dynamic lighting can improve both working performance and ability to relax if the system is correctly designed.

The effect of increased performance is even more important for larger office spaces, where a correct mixture of natural and artificial light has to be maintained throughout the day. Sub-optimal lighting can lead to eye strain and other health problems if not corrected. Moreover, the office spaces themselves can become more flexible in their use; turning ordinary workspace into a conference room should the necessity arise. The dynamic lighting system can then allow for presentation to be screened through a projector, an action that requires different lighting conditions than work. In dedicated conference rooms different lighting is required for company meetings and meetings with clients: the former should bolster performance, while the latter should evoke hospitality and positive mood.

In the case of larger lighting systems, the remote controls should be replaced or aided by daylight sensors to keep the light from different sources correctly balanced. If necessary they should be interconnected with shutters if too much direct sunlight is coming in at wrong angles, causing computer screen glare and other unwanted effects.



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