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Nihal Nazeem

Mr. Williams
STEM 6°/7°
1/31/16

Daylighting Lab Write-Up

The objective of this study was to find the impact of using daylighting techniques to
supply natural light to a home, minimizing the use of electricity. Our experiments conclude that
for the most efficient use of daylight, a combination of a 5x4 ft window along with a light shelf
on a southwest facing room, yielded the most brightness in a room at a maximum of 80% to full
brightness, during both a summer or winter noon. First we gathered information, or researched
some daylighting techniques employed by engineers. Then we made a 40x25x10ft (1000 ft​2​)
floor plan of our house which would include the following rooms with these elements, built to a
1ft:1cm ratio: Living room with an open door, three 3x4 ft windows, and two 5x2.5 ft light
shelves; a kitchen with three solar tubes; a hallway with two solar tubes; an office with two solar
tubes; a restroom with skylights; and two bedrooms with 5x4 ft windows, and a 7x2.5 ft light
shelf for each bedroom. This was then tested with a light bulb, that represented the sun, and were
positioned to represent both summer and winter mornings, evenings, and noons. The data, is as
follows:
Daylighting Brightness Data
(As a Subjective Percentage of Brightness)

Rooms Winter Winter Winter Average Summer Summer Summer Average Total
AM Noon PM Winter % AM Noon PM Summer Average
(30°) (75°) % %

Living 30% 50% 40% 40% 10% 5% 5% 7% 23%
Room

Kitchen 50% 10% 10% 23% 5% 10% 5% 7% 15%

Bedroom 0% 60% 80% 47% 0% 80% 70% 50% 48%
1

Bedroom 0% 60% 80% 47% 0% 80% 70% 50% 48%
2

Restroom 0% 10% 10% 7% 0% 20% 20% 13% 10%

Office 0% 10% 10% 7% 5% 20% 30% 18% 13%
When comparing the average brightness percentages between Winter and Summer, it is
clear that generally during wintertime there is more light received by the house, than during the
summer. The most significant changes that can be noted are the significant decrease in light for
the living room and kitchen, when looking specifically among the seasons and time of day. This
could be attributed to the fact that the summer sun is higher in the sky, giving less direct light to
the living room windows, and kitchen. Another trend that appears is the general increase of
lighting for the restroom and office, for the seasons and time of day. Since the sun sets farther
East, and is higher in the sky during winter, there is more opportunity for the ray of the sun to hit
the roof of the ceiling, which has solar tubes, and a skylight. The last trend, which is not seen
much average change, but has undergone interesting noon and evening time changes between the
seasons, has an average decrease. But during the noontime for winter compared to summer, there
is an increase, as a decrease is evident in for the evening between the two seasons. Since the sun
is higher during, the summer, and more directly over the design, the angle at which light reflects
from the light shelf is more steep, which allows for more light to get inside the room. But the
reason why there is a decrease in the evening is because during winter the sun is lower and sets a
smaller arc traveled than summer. This makes it so that during winter evenings, the lower sun
can better light up the rooms.