The direct component is necessary for the critical tasks of evidence inspection and
seeing people clearly. This will generally be accomplished with recessed downlights,
such as dimming compact fluorescent fixtures.
The indirect component creates inter-reflections of light (also called bounce light),
which are important with respect to vertical illuminance and for softening what
otherwise would be harsh shadows on faces and evidence. The indirect component can
be accomplished with architectural cove lighting, suspended luminous bowls,
suspended architectural luminaires with an indirect element, or wall or cove mounted
A layer of wall washing is necessary for acceptable room surface brightness. This is a
significant factor that contributes to the impression of the majesty of the courtroom.
Often the best way to accomplish wall washing is with linear fluorescent coves or linear
wall wash fixtures, although it can also be accomplished with compact fluorescent
downlights with a wall wash distribution.
Task lighting should be provided as necessary for the attorney's tables. If there is task
lighting for the attorney's tables, and dedicated recessed downlights for the jury and
judge/witness areas, then it may be possible to reduce the overall direct element in a
good portion of the room. In addition to saving energy, this has the added aesthetic
benefit of keeping the ceiling mostly "clean," with fewer downlights.
Daylighting is consistently well-received in almost all environments, if, and only if,
appropriate controls are utilized. Used well, it can dramatically improve the quality of a
courtroom and truly heighten the experience of the room for all of the end users. Managed
poorly, daylighting can be a problematic source of glare and thermal discomfort. In
situations where windows are the primary or singular source of natural light, this usually
means the use of controllable shade systems at the windows. In new construction buildings
daylighting strategies may be more complex, possibly including clerestories, light shelves,
and other strategies. To save energy with the use of daylight, the electric lighting must be
tied into photocells that can sense the amount of daylight and adjust the electric lighting
accordingly. Care should be taken to ensure that there is adequate attention to the cost
benefit of the daylighting, as the costs associated with daylighting control can be
significant, depending on the design. Daylighting design is considered a specialty in its
own right, so it is important to look for deep and proven experience in the selection process
of the lighting designer.
3.2.4. Flexibility and Control
Lighting control systems and dimming are a necessity for the courtroom well areas.
Continuous dimming is preferred, but step-dimming can be sufficient in some cases.
Audiovisual presentations are one of the tasks where the need for lighting control becomes
most evident. For example, when a front projection system is used, it becomes important to
dim the light that would otherwise wash out the screen. It is important to have a user-
friendly control system with preset scenes that are easy to change. The required "scenes"
are listed correctly in the USCDG. Security is important so that only the appointed