3 Ways a Daylighting System Can Improve Architectural Design

By Jeff Brain | February 16, 2016

When we speak about the performance of sustainable lighting products, we tend to describe three factors: quality, intensity, and energy efficiency. We consider how light travels across space when quantifying the intensity needed for maximum workforce productivity and retail merchandise visibility, but when it comes to the aesthetics of light, we do not take this into account in design plans. Yet it is a major factor contributing to the performance of a lighting product, and it ought to be taken into consideration as well.

The natural light a daylighting system provides dynamically interacts with building architecture, diminishing dark corners and opening the space up so that it feels larger, cleaner, and more welcoming to occupants. Beyond that, here are three more ways that a daylighting system can improve architectural design.

Perceive More Colors And Shades

The broad-spectrum rays of the sun make it possible for the human eye to perceive and distinguish a wide variety of colors and shades which would otherwise remain indistinguishable under narrow-spectrum, artificial lights. Architectural details are enhanced and can appear modelled, or shaped, by the direction of the sun, and their appearance is more pleasing for humans to look at as a result of being affected by the conditions of the natural world.

Highlight Lines And Shapes

When a daylighting system is the only source of light used during the day, it enters the interior at one angle, thereby creating a consistent direction of light. Unlike artificial lights which can be set to illuminate a single room from multiple directions, the single direction of daylighting helps us unambiguously distinguish lines and shapes, and it aids our understanding of the space as a whole.

Design With a View

As elements of design, windows and skylights add depth and character to a space. When there is a view available, it should be exploited by the architectural design in order to create contrast and variety to the interior of the building. A view to the outside world will also give occupants a connection to nature, which satisfies certain physiological requirements, such as entraining their circadian rhythms and helping adapt their eyes to distance.

When seeking to improve architectural design, daylighting should be at the heart of your plans. We naturally see and understand man-made environments best when they are lit with the natural, broad-spectrum rays of the sun. If you are interested in learning more about daylighting in design, read our ebook The Power of Daylighting Systems in Building Design.

Download The Power of Daylighting In Building Design

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