Use of natural light has the advantages, compared with artificial illumination, of not consuming fuel and not having associated operating costs. But daylight has the disadvantages of being dependent on the availability of windows and on the absence of light-blocking obstructions outside the windows, of not being available between sunset and sunrise, and of providing weak light on cloudy days and around twilight and dawn. When lighting is needed within a building at those times, it must be provided by artificial illumination. Also, for parts of rooms at large distances from windows, where adequate daylight does not reach, artificial illumination is needed to supplement the daylight. When supplementary lighting is required, initial, maintenance, and replacement costs of lamps and fixtures are not saved by use of daylight, although costs of power for lighting can be reduced by turning off lamps not needed when daylight is available. In addition, design for daylighting should be  carefully executed so as not to introduce undesirable effects, for example, glare, intensive sunlight, or excessive heat gain.
Elements can be incorporated in building construction to control daylight to some extent to provide good lighting within short distances from windows. For example, to prevent glare, windows may be shielded, by blinds or by outside overhangs, against direct sunlight. To reduce heat gain, windows may be glazed with reflecting, insulating, or heat-absorbing panes. Ceiling, floor, and walls with high reflectance should be used to diffuse light and reflect it into all parts of rooms. To illuminate large rooms, daylight should be admitted through more than one wall and through skylights or other roof openings, if possible. In rooms that extend a long distance from windows, the tops of the windows should be placed as close to the ceiling as possible, to permit daylight to penetrate to the far end of the room.
Design procedures for daylighting are presented in Recommended Practice for Daylighting, RP-5, Illuminating Engineering Society of North America.

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