Our workplace is where we spend at least a third of our day, so it needs to have adequate comfort and safety features. One important aspect to consider is the lighting solutions of the working environments.
Industrial lighting is fundamental for a greater safety and productivity
Many companies simply adopt a general lighting system, which can be suitable for warehouses or workplaces where the performance of the employee does not require the highest precision. Nevertheless, companies that provide services where quality and precision are the key aspects should also install as part of the general lighting system, additional lamps for each workstation.
In addition to these aspects, which are of fundamental importance for working environments, another important aspect must also be taken into consideration: safety. It is well known, in fact, that if an industrial plant (or a warehouse) does not have sufficient lighting to ensure the total safety of its workers, the employer (the owner) can be prosecuted according to the law. For this reason, an employer who wants his employees to work without endangering their health, will have to take care of the lighting of their workplace.
The design of industrial lighting systems is one of the most complex topics that an employer has to deal with when it comes to the management of manufacturing plants. This is not only connected to the maintenance of the production capacity of the plant, but also to the preservation of those psychophysical conditions that allow the employees of a company to work to the best of their ability.
For this reason, in recent years, a Human Centred approach has evolved. This approach is based on design lighting solutions according to the needs of the employees ‘workplace. The aim of this approach is not only to understand their needs, but also to ensure that every employee has a job which is as comfortable as possible.
Having said so, the question we can ask ourselves is: what are the main features on which we should work for a truly efficient lighting system? Let’s discover them together…
The main features for designing an industrial lighting system
To properly design an industrial lighting system, it is absolutely necessary to work on some features that can influence the employees’ production capacity. The aspects that need to be more carefully designed are:
- Flexibility – the ability of the lighting system to adapt to every work environment without interrupting any production activities. When designing a flexible lighting system, industry experts recommend using multi-sensor structures that can quickly move lighting devices, while using computers.
- Productivity – the ability of the lighting system to stimulate workers: industry experts say that shortwave blue light lighting is more suitable for industrial environments because they stimulate employees more. Moreover, to protect workers’ health, experts recommend using light and colour schemes that follow the development of daylight and stabilise the natural rhythm of sleep-wake.
- Efficiency – the ability of the lighting system to ensure sufficient energy production to meet production needs without increasing costs. For a more efficient lighting system, we recommend systems with a centralized unit that only switch the lights on when needed, thus avoiding energy waste and additional costs.
- Finally, one last aspect that need to be taken into consideration to correctly design an industrial lighting system is its reliability. Obviously, there are no lighting solutions that are suitable for all the warehouses, because every warehouse has different characteristics to which the systems must adapt. For example, in warehouses with high temperatures, lighting systems must be well protected against overheating. On the contrary, in buildings that are subject to chemical circulation or that can become dirty very quickly it is recommended to hermetically seal the lighting solutions to be used.
A new frontier in industrial lighting: LED bulbs
In recent years, a new type of bulb has emerged on the market, a light bulb that makes it possible to effectively light up the warehouses and receive less expensive bills. We are talking about LED bulbs.
What are the main advantages of this type of lighting? You will find here after those that deserve a special consideration:
- the possibility of saving up to 70% of energy in a year compared to traditional lighting systems;
- a longer life than traditional bulbs, which means lower costs for maintenance and for replacing the bulbs. According to some studies carried out by experts in the field, it is estimated that a LED bulb has an average life of about 8300 days (which is equivalent to about 50,000 hours), while a traditional bulb lasts much less (1000 days, or 6000 hours);
- The high level of environmental sustainability that comes from the fact that LED light bulbs do not contain any harmful gases inside them, making them an ideal type of lighting for employers who also want to protect the surrounding environment;
- a virtually zero impact on workers’ health, resulting from the absence of infra-red or ultraviolet rays emission, which is extremely harmful to human eyesight;
Finally, among the main advantages of LED light bulbs, we can mention tax deductions offered by the (Italian) Government for energy requalification operations in private homes and industrial warehouses.
In a few words, LED light bulbs are ideal for all employers who, while planning the design of the lighting for their industrial plant, want to protect both the health of their employees and increase their production capacity, without damaging Mother Nature.