Here is a question from a former student regarding ergonomics solutions for lighting:
“In one of the sites I recently attended for a presentation on Ergonomics, they showed me the room for the 911 dispatcher calls. Their complaints are related to eye strain. They have fluorescent lighting with a very high ceiling in a large room. They have tried glare resistant monitor covers, wearing sunglasses, but still would like another option. I thought about suggesting engineer changes with different light bulb wattage. When I looked up what is recommended for computer work…not sure how to explain what I found to the manager. Computer use only: 300-500 lux (25-50 foot candles). Specific luminaires designed to eliminate computer screen glare at 0.35 w/ft2. Should I ask what they currently have as the manager may not know without talking to an engineer? Any suggestions?”
Here’s my response:
“The first question is : Do they need to read hard copy information as well of read from a computer screen? If so, then you generally want to decrease overhead light and provide task lights over the documents. The easiest way would be just to remove some of the bulbs from the florescent fixtures.
Other options would include placing a filter over the light fixture to decrease the amount of light or to replace the florescent bulbs with ones that have a different spectrum of light.
Check out this site; http://www.naturalux.com/
The light values that you mentioned can be measured with a light meter. Remember that these numbers were calculated assuming that all workers have normal eyesight.”