The best light for
Better performance and well-being with the right light source.
Light is essential for daily work in dental laboratory. Without a high-quality light source, seeing becomes tiring and harmful to the eyes. Precision suffers, and well-being and productivity are not at their best.
IlluminanceGood visual conditions require illuminance levels that are characterized by the "nominal illuminance levels" of the German Workplace Ordinance. The relevant workplace directive ASR 7/3 and DIN 67505 specify 1,000 to 1,500 lux nominal illuminance for the dental laboratory under the term "workplace lighting". Conventional ceiling lights rarely achieve the required 1,500 lux illuminance at the laboratory workplace. If they do, the large number of lights often results in strong direct glare. This is not the case with pendant or articulated lights; the dental technician adjusts the light themselves in such a way that no direct glare occurs despite the high illuminance.
Distribution of brightnessA balanced distribution of luminance, i.e., the visually perceived brightness of illuminated surfaces in a room, is particularly important. Even at high lighting levels, it creates the conditions for physical well-being and harmony in the room. In addition to the bright working area, a less bright environment is crucial for workplace lighting in the laboratory. The brightness of the secondary work surfaces should be no more than a third of the brightness of the work area. It is essential to aim for wall surfaces with low luminance levels as recovery zones for the eyes when looking up from work. The differences in brightness of ceilings, walls, furnishings, and floor surfaces in the laboratory should be between 1:3 and 1:10 compared to the value of the workpiece to be balanced.
Glare is the most common cause of lighting-related visual complaints in the workplace. Sensitivity to glare increases significantly with age. Older people are therefore much more disturbed by bright lamps or bright reflections on the work surface than younger colleagues.
Light that falls directly into the eye from a light source or indirectly via shiny, reflective surfaces causes glare and thus a reduction in visual performance. What applies to offices with computer workstations also applies to dental laboratories: no lights that can be seen directly, but rather dimmed lights. This is easy to achieve with height-adjustable pendant or articulated luminaires and possibly additional glare control in the transverse direction.
Light direction and shadowingDirectional light is required to be able to recognize the contour of a surface. This means that the workpiece is not illuminated evenly, but shadows are created. The different brightnesses of the shadow areas then allow spatial perception and convey the impression of depth and structure, which we understand as contrast.
Dental technicians are confronted with changing light colours at their workplace. During the day, the eye must adapt to the changing colours of daylight, in the morning and evening to twilight and in the winter months constantly to the light colour of artificial lighting. From a technical perspective, there is also the problem that his customers' colour measurements are often made with unknown light colours.
An interesting solution to this issue is luminaires with two individually switchable and dimmable fluorescent lamps of different light colours. The benefit of these luminaires for colour assessment lies in the high colour contrast and the ability to simulate different lighting situations as experienced by the patient after starting work. This lighting technology has been made possible by high-intensity compact fluorescent lamps.
Lighting comfort - Visual comfort
Compliance with the technical lighting quality characteristics guarantees the user the visual comfort that is essential for ensuring work performance, quality, and well-being. Two further technical luminaire features are worthy of note for improved visual comfort. These are the heat dissipation of the luminaires and the operating mode with electronic ballasts (EBs). All open luminaires in the DIALITE series (manufacturer: SYSTEM EICKHORST, Hamburg), for example, do not expose the worker to heat because the heat from the fluorescent lamps is dissipated through the openings at the top.
If the lamps are then operated with electronic ballasts, there is no further heating of the reflector in the closed area. And where there is no heat loss, energy is saved!
The real benefit of the rather complex ECGs for eye comfort, however, is the operating frequency of 35,000 Hz compared to the 50 Hz mains frequency of conventional ballasts. No flickering or flickering of the fluorescent lamps. Incidentally, dimming fluorescent lamps offers completely new prospects for dental technicians.
"People are the measure of all things". And in a holistic, pleasant lighting atmosphere, they will be able to carry out their demanding work in a more productive and balanced way.
- Strong, wide-area light, illuminance at least 2,000 - 3,000 lux, if necessary with additional directional lighting
- Light colours 4,000 - 5,000 Kelvin, daylight from 5,500 - 6,500 Kelvin Colour rendering CRI 90 for tooth selection, ceramic and plastic veneering and final inspection
- Glare-free and flicker-free light
- No stroboscopic effects
- Balanced luminance distribution