Some businesses may require their workers to perform their jobs outdoors and at night while most establishments need exterior lighting to provide safety and security for their premises and employees.
The choice of an exterior lamp depends on factors such as specific use, exposure to elements and security requirements.
If exterior lighting is used to illuminate the outdoor area where work is to be done, a metal halide lamp which provides superior colour rendering is best. For lighting parking areas and walkways where the ability to see colours as they appear in daylight is not essential, a sodium lamp may be used to illuminate large outdoor spaces to make your employees feel safe as they leave your premises at night. For decorative purposes, the colours of LED (light emitting diodes) lights appear attractive at night. You may also use fluorescents to illuminate outdoor signs and as spot lights for billboards and company logos.
The weather can pose difficult conditions for operating lighting systems. Fluorescents may have problems starting up and display fluttering light in low-temperature environments while High Intensity Discharge (HID) lamps such as the mercury, metal halide and sodium lamps can operate in a wide range of temperatures. Of the three types of HID lighting systems, it is the sodium lamp that provides light very well in almost any weather condition, particularly in fog and mist.
While bright outdoor lights do not necessarily prevent crime, they provide a sense of security to employees and aid in the detection of a crime in progress. Aside from installing lighting fixtures, you can also attach motion detectors that may switch outdoor lights on when someone walks near them. Halogen or incandescent lamps are perfect for security sensors because they can be switched on instantly unlike the HID lamps which take some time to start up and illuminate brightly. Because incandescent lights are not energy efficient, it is best to include HID lamps as your main source of outdoor night lighting. Motion detectors or occupancy sensors can also be used for energy management so that lights may be turned down when no one is in the area or when the area is no longer in use.
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