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What kind of lights needed for museum?

Last Update: 08/21/2018 15:30

People visit the museum, mainly to understand the history, to accept the cultural influence. Therefore, the space light environment, should protect the exhibits under the premise of doing everything we can to create a suitable atmosphere for educational viewing.

For the lamps in museum, we should solve the facula firstly.

The above picture is that we often see, it’s the three- types facula.

The first kind of facula (pictures on the left) is needed for museum space, its very soft 、the light in pure.

The second type of facula (middle pictures) suitable for hotels, special stores etc, the facula is neat, more clear, but its not suitable for museums, its easy to form the facula when used , the contrast is too strong.

The third type of facula (the picture on the right) is often seen. But its the most inappropriate: in middle area , the facula is too strong to see the obvious distinction between light and shade. when look it carefully, there are a stray light at the outer ring, also the light color between middle and edge are is different.

Thus, soft, without facula、stray light are the basic requirement for museum lighting.  Its due to the relatively dark space caused.

However, its enough?

Of course, the answer is “ No”.

Make the facula to be more soft is the first step, light control to be more well is the next step.

For control light, the most difficult is for two sides, they are for narrow angle and wall area.

1. Narrow angle area

Museum focus lighting often used to narrow light, because the space need to show the exhibits, they are the historical exhibits, after hundreds of years or even thousands of years, has become mottled, when displayed, it may not so beautiful as the show box、showcase .At this time, if need to highlight the exhibits, its only rely on the light. We should move the light from the showcase, show box away, focused on the exhibits, to highlight it.

To achieve this goal, you have to rely on narrow beam angle lamps! Museum level generally 3 meters, 10 degrees or so lamps, 50% of the central light intensity of the facula to the ground is around 0.5 meters, if the size of the exhibits almost the same, the beam angle will also be very good. However, the size of the exhibits is different, most of them is smaller than this size, if would like to have a good performance, you have to use a smaller beam angle lamps.

Except the small angle, it also need absorbed light fast, otherwise the facula will be large.


Like the above picture, the beam angle is smaller, but the facula will be large.

The qualified small beam angle lamps, projection out of the effect is satisfactory.

High space、small exhibits are the most test for lamps, if the lights can make a beautiful light shape under 4-8degree, that will be so great!

2. Wall washer light

There are lots of graphic boards、exhibitions、scene recovery and other space etc, it need to use the wall wash lighting, the most important is the optical uniformity.

All manufacturers of wall washer, the most common light does not open, the ground light is too much.

Good wall washer light should be like this

For museum lighting, the glare have the standard requirements. Direct-type lamp shielding angle should not be less than the provisions of Table 4

Bulb Luminance (kcd/m2)

shielding angle (°C)









For this light source brightness, except the showcase lights, fiber optic lights (the brightness  of the surface is less than 500 kcd / m2), the general requirements of the museum anti-glare lighting is greater than 30 degrees.

Attachment is the BJ series rail lamp information, please download.