LED Indoor Swimming Pool Lighting Fixtures
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A natatorium requires good lighting to maintain good safety standards. With LED natatorium lighting, the facility is able to provide a good experience along with reduced operating costs associated with a typical lighting system. All while keeping out humidity to maintain a long lifespan.
Indoor LED Natatorium Fixtures
LED Lights For Natatoriums
The first comment people make when they enter an indoor pool isn't always "The lighting is fantastic!" But this does not mean that lighting is not an important factor. Even though it plays a secondary role in the overall functionality of a pool, it has a great impact on the safety, function and aesthetic appeal.
Designing indoor pool lighting is a complex undertaking because of the many variables involved. The goal is to create seamless integration between natural light and artificial light to ensure the lighting enhances safety and also complements the architecture and furnishings in the space.
In a public indoor swimming facility, the lifeguards also require good lighting to maintain safety at all times. And while safety is the primary concern of every lighting designer creating a lighting plan for a natatorium, the light must also create a positive user experience.
Indoor pools have different uses. Some are used for international and national-level competitions while others are in community sports complexes. One of the most important things to consider when choosing lights for this environment is that it is highly corrosive.
Chemicals in the swimming pool can corrode the metallic surfaces of lighting fixtures in a very short period of time. Luminaires with a long lifespan and reliability are required in a natatorium as they lower service costs, lighting maintenance, and noise distractions
Natatoriums have unique lighting challenges. Water reflects and refracts light, making it hard for judges and spectators to watch competitive swimming events. All the lighting challenges posed by a natatorium can be solved by LED natatorium lighting.
Natatorium Lighting: Challenges and Solutions
A good indoor pool lighting system must have three qualities: safety, resistance, and durability. Since a natatorium poses many lighting challenges, the lighting designer must carefully examine several features prior to choosing lighting fixtures and installing them.
First, he must establish the purpose of the pool — some swimming pools are meant for leisure while others are meant for competitions. It is also important to be familiar with the rules and regulations that govern the lighting in this environment. In addition, the safety of the swimmers and pool staff must also be addressed. Lastly, the durability and resistance of the LED lights must comply with the set regulations.
Let us talk about some of the challenges posed by indoor pools and the solutions LED lights offer.
The lighting levels in an indoor pool usually vary according to its function. Is the pool located inside a hotel or a condominium? Will it be used only for recreational purposes or will it host swim meets and swimming competitions? Will the pool be used for a variety of activities or televised competitions?
Some indoor swimming pools serve as training ground for athletes while others host diving lessons and pool activities such as water polo. It is essential to know the end-use of the pool before selecting the lighting fixtures — because different pool activities must meet specific lighting standards.
Natatorium Lighting Level Recommendations
|Competition Level||Pool||Pool Uniformity||Deck||Deck Uniformity|
|Professional (Class I)||75 foot candles||1.7:1 max/min||50 foot candles||2.5:1 max/min|
|Collegiate (Class II)||50 foot candles||2.5:1 max/min||20 foot candles||4:1 max/min|
|Intermediate (Class III)||30 foot candles||3:1 max/min||10 foot candles||4:1 max/min|
|Recreational (Class IV)||30 foot candles||4:1 max/min||10 foot candles||4:1 max/min|
Without a doubt, the most important consideration when choosing lighting for indoor swimming pools is safety. And when it comes to safety, the choice of lights and their installation angles make all the difference. Powerful LED natatorium lights are incredibly reflective and well-built.
When you understand how different surfaces interact with different light sources, you can increase the light’s maximum depth penetration. This will help lifeguards to see the activities going on in all areas of the pool. It also helps in enhancing the pool's visual appeal. For better visibility, lighting designers should install lights in the pool’s interior.
One of the major concerns pertaining to pool lighting is how water reflects light, producing glare. Glare can cause discomfort to swimmers and even pool attendants. The quality of light in an indoor swimming pool must be very high as the light impacts the safety of the swimmers as well as the people who take care of the pool. Special attention must be given to the reflection of light on the swimming pool’s surface and its surroundings.
A lighting designer can tone down reflection by installing LED lights on the pool's perimeter and on the terrace. This problem can also be solved by installing lights that project light upwards and downwards. The lighting products you choose must have a low glare rating.
The glare rating is measured using the Unified Glare Rating, a method used to calculate the glare emitted by luminaires. The rating helps us know how likely a light bulb is to cause discomfort to the people around it. A glare rating of less than 10 indicates low glare while a rating above 30 indicates high glare.
Pools are very humid by nature and are known for their corrosion-causing ability. These two features can easily affect the lifespan of luminaires. The humidity in an indoor pool is normally very high (up to 60%) and there is also a high percentage of chlorine vapors which speed up the corrosion of materials.
Apart from this, the very design of swimming pools makes lighting maintenance quite difficult and costly. This is why lighting installations must be both durable and resistant. The LED lights used in natatoriums must have very high IP ratings.
An IP rating higher than 65 is considered good. Lights with an IP67 or IP68 rating are excellent as they are protected from water nozzles and submersion in water for specific periods of time.
How to Create a Good Natatorium Lighting Design
When the lighting in a natatorium is done right, the space looks and feels different. And while swimming pools come in different designs, the basic principles of lighting are still the same. When you get these fundamentals of lighting design right, you'll be able to create the perfect lighting plan for an indoor swimming pool.
Also known as the beam angle or the spread of light, beam spread is the amount of space covered by a light source. It is the angle at which light is distributed. As light spreads out and moves away from a light source, it becomes less intense. Every light source has a beam spread, from a halogen lamp to a LED lamp. It can be as narrow as 4° or as wide as 120°.
It is very important to get the beam angle right as it affects the overall illumination of the natatorium. The swimming pool’s interior color will also have a significant effect on the illumination. If the interior color is dark, you may have to get LED lights with narrower beam angles to ensure the swimming pool is well illuminated.
This is because dark colors absorb light. You may also need to use more lights. However, if the interior color is light, lights with wider beam angles may be used as they will distribute light evenly.
Olympic Size Swimming Pool - 50+ fc average with glare shield - 30 ft mounting height
Retrofitting Natatorium Lighting
Many natatoriums have specialized, expensive up-lighting that reflects generated light on a white ceiling. This type of lighting reduces glare, especially for swimmers who are performing a back- stroke.
These fixtures would be extremely expensive to replace. Fortunately, they can easily be retrofitted. Our HID conversion to LED Kits are designed to replace 150W to 1000W Metal Halide. Installing these high power LED Kits is as simple as a bulb and ballast replacement. They last a very long time, and will greatly reduce your energy consumption and lighting maintenance costs.