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The aim of good lighting in schools, both artificial and natural, is not only to provide enough illumination to allow users to perform the necessary tasks but also to contribute to the happiness and well-being of both students and teaching staff. The majority of educational buildings, from primary schools to universities, incorporate a wide range of spaces which may each require different lighting solutions.
Lighting is the single largest consumer of energy within a school building; therefore reducing this energy load has to be a key goal in any project. The use of LED luminaires combined with lighting controls can offer substantial savings, particularly in the educational environment where rooms typically have less utilisation than in commercial areas.
The lighting in the canteen areas should be inviting and comfortable yet at the same time provide the required illuminance for the high level of activity.
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Changing rooms require bright and uniform lighting and have high energy savings potential due to their specific and time-limited use. The toilet and shower areas require luminaires with the correct IP rating.
Circulation areas should enable people to find their way easily and safely through the building, even when they are unfamiliar with it. Corridors are used as social areas, for the display of student works and transport. Illuminance level requirements are 100 lux, but higher illumination values should be adapted to the activity type and level. They will also, in most cases, need to provide means of escape and this will require emergency lighting.
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Thorlux Light Line Integra
Students require the right learning environment and studies have shown that good lighting aids the subconscious processes that energise learning. Modern learning spaces need to have the flexibility to provide different activities and teaching methods. Through the use of lighting controls the correct lighting level for the varying teaching requirements can be achieved, together with energy saving capabilities through absence/presence detection and daylight linked saving.
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Thorlux Light Line Integra Acoustic
The kitchen areas require high illuminance levels and uniformity. The luminaires must be of the correct IP rating required for food preparation areas.
Rooms used for practical work, i.e. laboratories, workshops, art rooms, food technology/catering, electronics, craft rooms and similar applied learning spaces, involve visual needs and tasks that are the same as those often found in industry. The main task of the lighting solution is to make objects and minimal differences of colour easily recognisable so good colour rendition and uniformity is essential. According to the type of visual task and material being worked upon, the luminaire may also need to meet a specific IP rating.
The lighting in a lecture theatre must reveal the lecturer to the audience and the audience to the lecturer, and also provide for the other visual tasks involved such as observing demonstrations, reading what is projected onto the screen, or written on the whiteboard, and the taking of notes. The luminaires must be positioned so as not to create glare problems either for the audience or the speaker.
In libraries the designer needs to allow for two main tasks; finding the correct book and reading or study. In addition, there are a number of other considerations such as lighting for using computers and accent lighting for display purposes. Lighting in each case calls for a different approach. Physically finding a book requires vertical illuminance on the spine of the book therefore 200 lux on a vertical plane at just above floor level is required. For computer and reading based tasks 300 lux is suitable for most users and in some libraries that are open to the wider adult community this may be
raised to 500 lux for reading tasks.
Sports halls are often multi-functional spaces so need to be flexible enough to cope with a wide variety of sporting uses. Appropriate lighting is vital in sports halls to allow activities to take place
that often demand difficult visual tasks, for instance tracking a fast moving shuttlecock against a similar colour background. Intelligent lighting controls that adapt lighting levels to the sport is the key to efficient use. There should be some control to keep glare to a minimum and the light distribution should provide adequate light on vertical surfaces. Lamps and luminaires should have wire guards or other impact-resistant protection, compliance with the ball test in DIN 57710 part 13 is recommended.
The vast majority of educational spaces now use whiteboards and/or projection equipment. These technologies have surface finishes prone to veiling reflection and, in the latter case, projected images that may struggle to compete with high luminance.
Lower levels of illumination are required when using modern projection equipment. This is best achieved through the use of electronic lighting controls to avoid the necessity for supplementary lighting.
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