Education, Healthcare, How to Light, Industrial

Unveiled: Lighting guide to help facilities managers

A man with his arms folded standing in a hospital corridor
Bill Dickson, head of estates at The Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust in Essex, is responsible for the maintenance and upgrading of a large and complex lighting installation. The new SLL guide is intended to assist his profession in their decision making.

A SPECIAL guide to lighting for facility managers has been published by the Society of Light and Lighting.

The SLL Lighting Guide (LG)20: Lighting and Facilities Management sets out a logical approach to identifying and undertaking lighting related tasks such as relamping and upgrades.

In addition to lighting tasks, facilities managers may also be responsible for energy monitoring within a building. 

LG20 provides guidance on outlining energy consumption and the maintainability of existing lighting installations. 

This information is often required in relation to service level agreements or, can create a compelling argument for upgrading lighting systems, in terms of return on investment in energy savings, reduced carbon footprint and increased reliability. 

LG20 is intended to help facilities managers to, ‘provide the right amount of light in the right place for the right amount of time.’ 

It aims to offer the necessary tools to ensure these three integral aspects. Firstly, quality of delivered light – considering lighting levels; uniformity; unified glare rating (UGR); and colour rendering. 

Followed by the right amount of light – watts and lumens; colour temperature and fidelity; maintenance factor; useful life expectancy of LED light sources and understanding L and B values; and inrush current. 

Finally, timing – considering lighting controls; presence, absence, and motion detectors; photocells; daylight linking; constant illuminance adjustment; dimming and regulation. 

The guide touches upon photometry and modelling, assisting with lighting calculations, specification and understanding product data sheets. 

It also looks at luminaires, outlining some typical application selection and awareness criteria.

The guide includes three case studies, providing practical examples and context. These look at lighting for a data centre; upgrading emergency lighting in a six-storey building; and the circular economy and repurposing luminaires. 

There is a growing interest and need for a circular economy approach, meaning that future lighting installations may be made up of refurbished, or even leased products.

This guide was written by Sophie Parry FSLL, vice-chair of the SLL Technical and Publications committee in conjunction with the CIBSE Facilities Management (FM) group. 

In working with the CIBSE FM Group, Sophie was able to ensure that the content and language is supportive of facilities managers with knowledge of electrical services, but whose work may occasionally involve lighting or related decision making. 

Regarding the aims of this guide and in developing communication between related disciplines, Sophie commented;

‘As the construction industry aligns with the increasing drive to net zero carbon by 2050, one of the methods being considered to reduce embedded carbon within a buildings’ fabric is to re-furbish existing buildings where possible, rather than demolish and re-build. 

‘The refurbishment scope and complexity will vary on a project-by-project basis, but in many instances will require local knowledge and input from the incumbent facilities manager.

‘It is therefore imperative that facilities managers have the correct knowledge level/access to knowledge of many construction disciplines to add value to such projects.’

This publication is primarily intended to provide guidance to those responsible for the design, installation, commissioning, operation, and maintenance of building services. The SLL says that, as with all SLL Lighting Guides, it is ‘not intended to be exhaustive or definitive and it will be necessary for the user to exercise their own professional judgement’.

  • For more information about the Society of Light and Lighting and CIBSE, please contact or telephone 0208 772 3685