The area of the office that is differentiated from the more formal working areas needs to look a bit different. The breakout space should be inviting and provide a rest from the usual desk and screen environment. Domestic style pendants with long suspensions to accommodate the lower style of furniture in this area are very popular. Light does not need to be so uniform here and pools of light from pendants and desk lighting are very attractive and provide homestyle comfort. Recessed accent downlights are also good for achieving this effect and have the added benefit of being low glare.
Where people are spending long periods of time at workstations (even in hotdesking areas) lighting needs to be bright enough to see clearly. 4000K or even 5000K lighting helps people to be alert and productive, however there is a downside to ever increasingly bright light fittings in the office. Glare from high output fittings is becoming a problem in offices, causing headaches and eye problems and the Society for Light and Lighting have issued guidelines for how much glare is acceptable in offices.
Lighting with a glare index of less than 19 (also known as UGR19) ensures your office lighting won’t be a headache. It is very easy to produce symmetrical UGR19 fittings such as LED panels however if something trendy such as LED linear is required, it is much harder to produce a UGR19 compliant luminaire. Luckily it is not impossible.
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There are only a small handful of UGR<19 linear luminaires available at present that provide the continuous “stripe of light” visual effect desired and are reasonably priced. Synergy Commercial Lighting has developed an exciting range of UGR<19 linear LED that allows lighting designers to generate compliant schemes that are functional and cost-effective.
Michael Gandy is Head of Marketing for Synergy Commercial Lighting, a pioneering British manufacturer of LED Linear, Architectural and Office lighting for the commercial fit-out sector.
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