In the Bible, we read: And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. With light, the darkness will disperse. When speaking of light, we may go directly to the beautiful description in the Bible. There is always light. But it seems that we never think about that what kind of light is the best for us.
Or do we just neglect the importance of light? Studies show that 85% of the information we acquire everyday comes from visual contacts. With no light, nothing would be able to deliver and nothing would be able to exist. More importantly, in our daily lives, appropriate light makes our work easier and greatly reduces our risks of being hurt in accidents.
However, what kind of light is “appropriate”, anyway? It is an ambiguous concept, actually. We need other variables to decide, such as the size of the space, the type of work and the intensity of the assignment, and the light we need per unit may hugely vary: for example, we need only 50-100 LUX illumination intensity for meeting guests (the outdoor intensity of a cloudy day is around 10 thousand LUX), but we have to have over 1000 LUX to work in a relatively small space for a longer period of time. Here comes the challenge for every space planner: how to design and use light wisely?
Energy-saving or Highly-efficient?—Green illumination
Green illumination was first brought up in early 1990s, consisting of four indispensable indicators, efficient and energy-saving, environmentally friendly, safe and comfortable. “Efficient and energy-saving” guarantees sufficient illumination effects with the less power energy consumption to dramatically reduce air pollutants from power plants and to therefore protect our environment.
The indicators in “safe and comfortable” specify criteria including clear and unaggressive lighting, no production of ultraviolet rays, glare and light pollution and so on.
Reflection: energy-saving doesn’t necessarily mean power-saving
Energy-saving illumination is not saving energies in a traditional sense any more, but meeting higher requirements in lighting quality and visual environmental conditions. Therefore, energy-saving illumination can’t be realized by simply lowering illumination standards but by fully usingmodern technology to improve lighting engineering capacity, orientation and efficiency of lighting devices.
Highly-efficient lighting devices are the foundations, but they are not limited to providing sources of light only. The source of light is a primary factor here, yet not the only one. Lighting devices and electrical accessories (such as ballasts) also have huge impact on illumination efficiency, which is—but shouldn’t be—neglected by people. High-performing products save more energy by 50% to 100% than inadequate ones. Moreover, operation and maintenance also has an essential role in the play.
Efficient energy-saving source is the primary factor, so we must try our best to promote the use of it. But some people would mistake it forthe promotion of energy-saving lamps (specifically referred to as compact fluorescent lamps), which is a harmfulone-side story. We should promote much more than that.Based ondifferent workplace conditions, at least three types of highly efficient light sources should be widely used. In this way, we can create a culture of light for our modern civilization.
1. The light from the source is full-color light whose spectrum is continuously distributed withinthe visible range of human eyes so that visual fatigue might be prevented.
2. Light spectral composition should include no ultraviolet and infrared light.
3. Light should beclose to natural light.
4. Light should be no-frequency and flicker-free.
Reference: Unilever, lighted up by 3 thousand illuminating units
Germany has been leading the world in energy efficiency. Unilever Headquarters in Hamburg is precisely a very good example. In terms of the building itself, space planning and allocation, the Headquarters isconsistent with NIMBUS (one of MATSU’s German partners) who literally lights up the building: it is an illuminating concept for the future to make better use of every resource. 3000 NIMBUS efficient light-emitting units illuminate the thirty-five thousand square meters in this 6-storey building: they go and surround the heart of the building, and everyone, staff or passers-by, will have the same warm and homely feeling. Meanwhile, the illumination also lights up an atmosphere of openness and transparency for communication.
Translated into Latin, the quote from the Bible means: let light be made. Yes, let us make it happen.