top of page
passive solar building icon



The goal of lighting should be the provision of a comfortable, pleasant, and safe visual environment. In the past, natural lighting was an integral consideration in building design and influenced building orientation, window design, and skylights. This provided the inestimable psychological values of daylight. Cheap electricity and inexpensive lights led to buildings that ignore daylight opportunities and too often profit from low-quality lighting. Daylighting is ideal for people. It helps improve health and productivity, reduces energy use for lighting, and reduces the need for cooling. Using natural light is not difficult, but has been widely ignored and replaced with very unpleasant artificial lighting.


Light requirements, light quality, daylighting, sunshine, shade, orientation, solar control, shades, filters, reflectors, solar tubes, light shelves, windows, glazing, comfort, visual performance


Bainbridge, D. A., K. Haggard, and R. Aljelani. 2013. Natural Lighting. pp.136-162. In Passive Solar Architecture. Chelsea Green.

Bainbridge, D. A. and R. Aljelani. 2013. Light shelves for daylighting. Presentation.

Bainbridge, D. A. 1978. Natural Lighting. Solar Office, California Energy Commission, Sacramento, CA. 12 p.

bottom of page