'Like strong coffee': Europe’s biggest human-centric office

THE LATEST ‘human centric’ office lighting installation is believed to be the biggest ever attempted in Europe.

In what’s being seen as a major endorsement of the concept, over 2,000 light fittings are now providing dynamic illumination for 550 workers across 10,000 square metres at the headquarters of energy company Innogy in Prague.

The LED luminaires are tuned to the workers’ circadian sleep-wake cycles and are designed to stimulate energy levels at set times in the day.

First thing in the morning and for a period immediately after lunch, the lights are set to 'boost' mode, in which they deliver an illuminance of 780 lux in a cool colour temperature of 5000K.

This helps to increase energy levels, workplace comfort, vision and performance, says the supplier Philips, which likened the stimulus to ‘a strong cup of coffee’.

The employees may, at any time, override the light settings, tailoring the light to their needs or specific work tasks, using a wall-mounted control panel. This touch-button unit enables control of lighting and blinds, allowing workers to personalise their immediate environment to suit their preferences.

The employees may, at any time, override the light settings, tailoring the light to their needs or specific work tasks, using a wall-mounted control panel. This touch-button unit enables control of lighting and blinds, allowing workers to personalise their immediate environment to suit their preferences. 

Some 860 ceiling luminaires and 96 downlights are programmed to provide different light settings at various times of the day. Additionally, to optimise energy use, 150 PIR sensors detect human presence and switch the lights off in a room or area when it is vacated. This combination of energy-efficient LED lighting and controls has cut energy at Innogy by 50 per cent compared to the previous fluorescent installation. The Dynalite lighting system also controls the integrated blinds.

‘We wanted to create an outstanding environment for our employees,’ Innogy senior facility manager Tomáš Michna told Lux.

The stimulus from the lights is like a strong cup of coffee'

‘At the beginning of the day the office lights mimic natural daylight, providing a useful energy boost. The light levels decrease until after lunch when we give another boost to help staff over the post-lunch energy dip. Nearly 80 per cent of employees surveyed described the new lighting as better or much better than the previous fluorescent tube lighting, and 60 per cent agreed that it contributed to a place in which they wanted to work’. 

A post-occupancy survey of employees found that 56 per cent found the lighting to be easy on the eyes, also contributed to employees rating an improvement in their performance following the renovation.

The consultant on the project was Ediface, the building contractor was BAK and the electrical contractor was Cobap.

 

  • Lux is organised two conferences  on Lighting for Health and Wellbeing in 2018. The first takes place in Newport Beach, California on 18 July and the second takes place  on Wednesday 26 September 2018 in London. For more information on both events and to view the full programme, click HERE.