Smart lighting designs

Lighting designs are very fluid, these days, embracing more innovative ideas and supported by design flexibility

Lighting in healthcare industry plays an extremely vital role. It gives opportunity to bring new changes in aesthetics, surprise and lot more beyond the current boundaries and endless opportunities in design as well as functionality. There are infinite ways to make the spaces look brighter, trendy and soothing with intelligent use of lighting.

  Advances and rapid growth of technology offers endless opportunities in usage of lighting. As designers we dream and look for innovative ideas and concepts to gel together, lighting industry experts are playing a major role in making these dreams come true.
Earlier, lighting was confined only to ceilings. Present innovative designs blend lighting aspects into other design elements and integrate seamlessly into ceiling, walls and floors.

Lighting designs are very fluid now, embracing more innovative ideas, well supported by industry’s design flexibility in customisation while ensuring high quality and reliability. Lighting helps bring in enhanced staff productivity, supports a congenial environment for patients healing and enhances overall efficiency and functionality.

  Today’s lighting industry is very agile, receptive to the design ideas/concepts and enthusiastic to take up new challenges. It does not limit itself to the supply part, but involves in extending wholesome service in customer support.
Human centric lighting is evidence based patient room solution using the natural power of light. A lighting solution for the patient room uses an intelligent networked system to provide
o Daylight / Circadian rhythm
o Ambience light & choice for patients
o High quality, glare free work light for staff

Scientific evidence shows that, a good lighting system provides improved patient and staff satisfaction, increased sleep duration &reduced time to fall asleep for a patient. In hospitals, since occupants 24-hour cycle is totally controlled, circadian system is very beneficial. There are few key parameters to be kept in mind in lighting design.For relaxation & quick healing of patients, tunable lighting should be considered. Patients should be offered personalized control device to select their preferred color temperature.
Most of the time, patients will be lying on the bed facing ceiling. Bright and direct lighting will induce lot of stress on their eyes. Hence indirect, glare free light fixtures with uniform distribution, to be considered for such areas.

Corridors are most circulated areas with patients moving on stretchers. The lighting shall be uniform, soothing, glare free so as to not to create stress on the patients. Indirect lighting will be a right choice for these zones as well.
Examination rooms: For examination rooms, lighting should be glare free. At the same time, lighting level should be good to examine well with possibility of dimming.

Outpatient department: For speciality zones/ less occupant zones,   app based monitoring of the space can be opted to schedule the lights , dim and measure energy consumption. In such zones, indirect, glare-free and high uniformity lighting to be opted.
General areas   like OPD waiting, nurse stations will have continuous occupancy. Due to this, in these areas lights have to be always on and offer optimum lux levels. Direct light LED luminaire with high transmittivity diffuser for bright, glare-free, high uniformity to be choosen.

Closed rooms like doctor’s room, consultation room which are intermittently occupied, LED luminaire with occupancy sensors to detect the occupancy to turn on/off lights, thus saving energy while space is unoccupied.
With continuous advancements in lighting technologies, many interesting products have been launched recently. Luminous textile is one of the eye catching products, which gives breath taking experience. Luminous textile integrates multi coloured LED, wrapped with fabric which can soften sound as well. With the appropriate soft ware, one can display video content. This can be used to control the ambience of the interior using a simple remote. This also enables change in the design without any damage to the existing system. This is suitable for maximum foot fall zones of hospital lobbies due to acoustical properties.

Luminous ceiling gives the feel of day light, serene and calm feel and also enhances room acoustics by reducing disturbing sound reflections. This allows designer to play with colours, textures and light, giving opportunity to explore ideas without limitation.
In hospitals, way finding is always one of the most essential needs. Apart from mandatory signage as part of the design, lighting can play a crucial role in making it more interesting. One of the advanced  and signature products which is launched recently is “luminous flooring”, which helps as way finder, welcoming for the visitors. This is a modular system which can blend with any flooring and helps to create an instant impression with customized signage.

Now new age apps are available, which are being used increasingly by facility management teams to  track energy consumption using wireless technologies, offering high levels of convenience and savings.

Sudheera Mure is Associate Directors-Interiors at Kgd.