Daylight research facilities

- Strategic Research Area: Health, Energy
- Status: existing and planned (TU/e Campus; Vertigo Building)

Building Physics and Services Laboratory disposes of a lighting lab where new light concepts can be tested in a build environment. The Daylight Laboratory is also related to the i-Lighting project, a TU/e High Potential Research Program that started in 2009. i-Lighting is a joint initiative of six TU/e departments.

The i-Lighting started with six PhD research projects and is currently being scaled up to the Intelligent Lighting Institute (ILI).  Parallel to ILI, the future Intelligent Lighting Institute Association (ILIA) will involve many industrial partners. Three PhD projects research the concept of Virtual Natural Lighting Solutions (VNLS) within i-Lighting with the aim of developing and investigating an unprecedented combination of displays and lighting systems. The systems imitate real windows both in the view they provide to the outside, and the light they bring to the inside, with all the qualities of natural light: dynamic, full spectrum and high intensity, with both directional and diffuse components.

Distinguishing facilities are the diffuse sky simulator and the direct sunlight simulator.

A new daylight research facility is needed for research on the use of daylight in the design of comfortable, healthy and energy efficient buildings. The facility is proposed as a testbed for the Sound Lighting (ZeroFlux) program line of the TU/e Intelligent Light Institute (ILI). The rotating daylight lab is constructed on the lower roof of the Vertigo building. The daylight lab will host multiple test rooms with reconfigurable walls, windows and skylights. The heating and cooling will be controlled electronically to enable systematic studies on impact of daylight on building performance and user experience.

The Lab is rotatable to enable studies for any orientation (N-E-S-W) and it has the capability to automatically track the sun, to support studies on continuous direct sunlight and without direct sunlight. Additionally the lab is used for comparison of real and artificial windows and skylights. With the Daylight Research facility the Department of the Built Environment extends their international expertise in the field of daylight research and it opens up the possibilities to attract new research projects.