Glare Protection: What is Glare and How to Choose Anti-Glare Lighting Fixtures

Glare Protection: What is Glare and How to Choose Anti-Glare Lighting Fixtures

I. What is Glare and Its Hazards?

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Light is the most fundamental environmental element for human activity. Without light, there would be no way to conduct work, study, production, or everyday life, demonstrating the beneficial aspects of light. However, when light becomes too intense or enters the eyes inappropriately, forming dazzling glare, it turns into pollution.

Glare refers to a visual condition where unsuitable brightness distribution, or extreme brightness contrasts in space or time, causes visual discomfort and reduces the visibility of objects. This could be due to lighting fixtures lacking glare control, illumination exceeding the normal needs of a workspace, highly reflective surfaces (reflective glare), and improper arrangement of lighting fixtures. Simply put, glare is the uncomfortable, dazzling light that appears within one’s field of vision due to improper brightness distribution, causing one to squint or close their eyes instinctively.

Glare significantly impacts people’s emotions. If people’s eyes are exposed to uncomfortable glare, they will feel irritation and pressure. Working under such conditions for extended periods can lead to eye soreness, induce visual fatigue, reduce vision, and cause irreversible damage to the eyes. It can also lead to annoyance and restlessness, altering the comfortable atmosphere and negatively affecting both work and life.

II. Causes of Glare

Glare mainly comes in two types: direct glare and reflected glare.

  • Direct Glare: This occurs when light sources in the direction of observation or near the line of sight emit glare, caused by the direct entry of light from high-brightness sources into the eyes. When people sit indoors with a horizontal gaze, the direction shown by the glare angle in the diagram is the primary cause of direct glare.
  • Reflected Glare: This is caused when light from high-brightness sources is reflected off glossy surfaces, especially polished metals like mirrors, and enters the eyes.
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  • Background Glare: Excessive background brightness in the environment affects normal vision.

Glare is omnipresent in life, as illustrated by:

III. What is the Glare Index?

As LED chip technology advances, LED lights are becoming brighter, and uncomfortable glare is becoming more severe. To achieve a comfortable, high-quality lighting environment, improving light fixtures to minimize glare is essential. The lighting industry has shifted its focus from merely brightness to the comfort of lighting.

The glare index (UGR) is an industry standard that measures the subjective response of the human eye to discomfort caused by light emitted from lighting fixtures in an indoor visual environment.

If the UGR is greater than 19, glare is noticeable and can irritate the eyes; if it is less than 19, the glare is acceptable. When purchasing light fixtures, it is also advisable to check if the anti-glare index is less than 19 to avoid buying fixtures that produce strong glare.

Here's how different UGR (Unified Glare Rating) values correspond to the sensation of glare, formatted in a table:

UGR Value Sensation of Glare
UGR = 28 Unbearable glare
UGR = 25 Uncomfortable glare
UGR = 22 Marginally uncomfortable glare
UGR = 19 Threshold between comfort and discomfort
UGR = 16 Marginally comfortable glare
UGR = 13 Barely perceptible glare
UGR = 10 No perceptible glare

This scale helps in understanding how different UGR values affect human comfort in terms of glare in lighting environments.

Here's the information about different UGR (Unified Glare Rating) limits for various settings, formatted into a table:

Area/Setting UGR Limit
General Office 19
Drawing Room 16
Classroom 16
Sewing Room 10
Hospital Ward 13
Surgical Demonstration Room 10
Assembly Workshop (Rough Assembly) 28
Assembly Workshop (Fine Assembly) 19
Large Item Warehouse 28

This table lists the maximum permissible UGR values to ensure suitable lighting conditions that minimize glare in various environments.

IV. How to Choose Anti-Glare Lighting Fixtures?

1.Deep Concealment of Light Sources:

The most effective way to control glare is to hide the light source, ensuring “light is seen, but the fixture is not.” For example, a deep anti-glare spotlight from Kingornan Lighting, where the depth of the light source (the distance between the light source and the edge of the fixture) reaches 5cm, determines the size of the anti-glare angle—the larger the angle, the higher the anti-glare index.

trimless recessed spotlights

KingOrnan’s 5S series spotlights ingeniously conceal the light source to a certain depth, effectively achieving an anti-glare effect where the light is visible, but the fixture itself remains unseen. This design principle ensures optimal visual comfort by minimizing direct exposure to the light source.

2. Shading Angle:

Also known as the protection angle, this is the angle between the outermost point of the light source and the edge of the light output opening, and a horizontal line passing through the center of the light source. Current home environment standards require a shading angle of at least 45°. For example, a surface-mounted spotlight from Kingornan Lighting achieves a 60° angle, effectively preventing direct eye contact with glare.

KingOrnan’s surface-mounted spotlight effectively minimizes glare with its 60° shading angle, ensuring comfortable lighting without direct eye contact with the light source.

3. Optical Collimating Lens:

Equipped with a focusing lens to enhance the precision of light output and provide a cleaner, more defined beam without causing discomfort.

KingOrnan’s XG series spotlights are designed with focusing lenses to ensure the light emitted is clean and clear, enhancing visibility without causing eye discomfort.

4. Honeycomb Anti-Glare Grid:

Lighting fixtures equipped with a honeycomb anti-glare grid can effectively filter glare and stray light, providing a more uniform light effect and transforming the light into indirect light for a more comfortable lighting environment.

KingOrnan’s MT26 series magnetic track lights use a honeycomb anti-glare design to convert direct light into indirect light, enhancing the comfort of the lighting environment.

5. Multiple Anti-Glare Features:

Using a combination of black reflective cups, honeycomb anti-glare, and deep concealment can absorb bright light and minimize leakage, achieving an anti-glare effect. It’s worth noting that matte cups perform better in preventing glare than glossy cups.

6. Dot Matrix Application on Fixtures:

  • Optical Diffusion: Using a dot matrix structure to diffuse emitted light can reduce the directness and concentration of light beams. This diffusion action makes the light softer and reduces the risk of glare.
  • Beam Control: The dot matrix can also be used to precisely control the direction and shape of the light beam. By accurately arranging the dot matrix, a specific light distribution pattern can be designed, effectively avoiding direct light into the eyes.
  • Uniform Illumination: Arranging a uniform dot matrix on the surface of the fixture helps achieve a more uniform light distribution. This uniform distribution reduces bright spots, thereby mitigating glare.

Additional Key Points for Anti-Glare Lighting Design

In addition to choosing fixtures with multiple anti-glare designs, the following points are also important in commercial and residential lighting design:

  1. Determine the appropriate environmental brightness based on factors such as room size, purpose, and orientation.
  2. Avoid using bare light sources, such as incandescent and fluorescent lights.
  3. Choose matte materials for walls and floors to reduce mirror reflections and redistribute light through the material’s diffuse reflection properties.
  4. Consider the number and arrangement of lighting fixtures. If too many fixtures are arranged within a space, exceeding the standard brightness, this can also cause uncomfortable glare for the eyes.

Let’s Wrap It Up!

KingOrnan is a factory with over ten years of experience in producing commercial lighting, specializing in anti-glare lighting fixtures. Our fixtures are not designed with just a single anti-glare feature but are equipped with multiple anti-glare designs to achieve the best anti-glare effects. KingOrnan is the leading and most trustworthy factory to meet your anti-glare lighting needs. Our experienced professional team is committed to providing services and products that meet or exceed industry standards.

We always offer high-quality anti-glare lighting fixtures at competitive prices. (We support individual customer inquiries for purchases.)

Let us be your one-stop shop for all your anti-glare lighting needs! Contact us now to learn more about our product line.

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