Helvar WELL Certified

Helvar Celebrating WELL: Supporting circadian rhythms with LoT

Henri Jusl茅n
WRITTEN BY HENRI JUSL脡N
Henri Jusl茅n, Helvar鈥檚 Chief Future Illuminator, focuses together with his team on lighting, research, university co-operation, IPR, standards and AI-solutions.聽With over 40 years聽of life experience and over 20 years of lighting experience, Henri is a true veteran of the lighting industry. Henri holds a number of qualifications including a D.Sc in tech and the WELL AP credential.

Sleep is an important part of recharging the body, but did you know that the quality of your sleep might be influenced by the lighting at your workplace? The WELL standard requires the use of more and/or cooler light during the morning hours to enhance circadian rhythms. However, it is important to note that morning light is not the only important thing for human beings. We should also avoid high lighting levels and/or cool light during the evening hours. For example, many studies have highlighted the negative impact on sleep when looking at mobile phones or watching television shortly before bedtime as these screens emit blue light that can make it harder for you to sleep. Many聽mobile devices now have settings that can reduce the amount of bluish light entering the user麓s eye. It is even more important to聽take care that there is no light in our bedrooms when we are聽sleeping.聽So, it would be wise to invest in black-out blinds which are designed to effectively stop the light from coming into the room.

Static lighting 24/7 is not good for us. Lighting conditions need variation. At Helvar鈥檚 WELL certified headquarters in Espoo, we aim to guarantee the correct lighting for people in several ways. Our Light over Time (LoT) feature enables tuning light levels and colour temperatures over time. Cooler white light with higher intensity can be implemented to help awaken the senses and help people prepare for the day ahead. There are some areas in the office where we have only changed the聽illuminance, and not the colour temperature. This is a suitable solution when lighting聽design聽has been done in a way where there is something to control on top聽of the minimum maintained values.聽We have also taken seasonal differences into account. For instance, SAD (seasonal affective disorder) is more common during the wintertime, so, it is logical to give people even more artificial light during the darker periods to counter these effects.

Lighting is more than just lighting control. You need to have the correct type of luminaires and enough 鈥渋nstalled鈥 light. Even good luminaires and great lighting control might not be enough. Since circadian effects are only received if light reaches our eyes, we need to also think about the colour of surfaces in a room. Bright colour workstations, like we have at our Helvar offices, allow more reflected light to reach our eyes. So, although good lighting supports our wellbeing and circadian rhythms, there are several aspects that need to be considered.

The WELL standard also requires companies to inform and educate their personnel about the importance of good lighting. In companies that specialise in lighting or lighting control, you would imagine their employees to all be lighting experts, however, even in a lighting company, most people have their daily tasks to focus on, which is something聽other than lighting. Thus, at Helvar we are聽educating our own people regularly on the benefits of good lighting.聽And, even more importantly, we are repeating these messages to ensure all of our employees are aware.