Following 60 years of industrious journalism, the Süddeutsche Verlag has abandoned its headquarters in the Munich city centre and built a new complex adjacent to the printing works on the edge of the city. The company has now been based in a 28-storey tower block with a connected low building since November 2008. The twin buildings not only offer modern working conditions for approximately 1,850 employees but also enable extremely energy-efficient operation, and in addition give the building owners enormous flexibility with regard to room concepts. The lighting concept from Siteco was a decisive influence upon all three factors.
A main demand of the construction authorities was flexible technology. Working processes in the media business sector are inclined to change rapidly, meaning that the publishers expect several relocations during operation. Ideally, the spacial geometry and building technology should be so flexible that space can be rented out at any time. A further decisive factor was energy efficiency. The publishing building was certified with the gold "Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design" by the U.S. Green Building Council. This certification evaluates in detail factors such as construction and operation with regard to saving resources, sustainabilty and level of innovation for buildings.
In order to satisfy the complex catalogue of requirements presented by the lighting design, both an efficient as well as a relatively young technology was implemented: microprismatic structures float in all rooms lying immediately behind the facade, whether open-plan or cell office, meeting or traffic zones. 6,000 ELDACON® frameless custom luminaires were integrated into the acoustic panels suspended below the ceilings.
The basis for the ELDACON® light control technology developed by Siteco are multi-layer, highly precise microprismatic structures of plastic used as luminaire covers. The interplay of effective edges (guiding of light) and preventative edges (blocking of light) of the microstructures is perfectly matched to create precisely determined light distribution with a high level of homogeneity, and without direct or reflected glare. Because of the precise refracting structures this results in the high lumen output and surface luminance characteristic of modern T5 lamps being more optimally controlled compared to conventional specular louvres. Due to omnidirectional glare control and complete concealment of the lamps, workstations and luminaires can be arranged at random. In terms of acoustics the use of plastic surfaces is highly advantageous compared to aluminium reflectors; aluminium reflectors installed with the building's acoustic panels would have significantly lessened the effect of these.
Behind the ELDACON® light control modules of the Süddeutsche Verlag custom luminaires are found two T5 lamps (28 watt and 35 watt) operated by electronic DALI control gear. This gives luminaires with a particularly high light output ratio.
The flush installation of the luminaires within the acoustic sails creates a calm ceiling appearance and a very bright spacial ambience. This in turn is emphasised by the small indirect light component (8%) that brightens the ceilings and makes the spaces appear friendly, and also giving the building a lively appearance from outside during nocturnal hours.
Efficiency and absence of glare from ELDACON® light control technology are also features of the Quadrature recessed luminaires installed as an alternative to the custom luminaires in spaces where acoustic panels could not be fitted. Small meeting rooms in the depths of the building for example are illuminated with Quadrature linear fluorescent luminaires installed in the ceilings. In this case primary light control is implemented with a highly specular reflector and only then is light emitted without glare via a prismatic cover downwards. This luminaire system thus also enables lighting fit for computer screens, soft brightness gradations, balanced shadowing and good vertical and horizontal illuminance levels.
An intelligent light control system was installed based upon the interplay of energy-efficient optical components such as prismatic louvres, modern T5 lamps and ballasts with cut-off technology, and controls the complex balance of lighting and interior solar protection in accordance with daylight levels and human presence. DALI ballasts enable the formation of luminaire groups according to lighting requirements and the switching and control of these. The DALI control is connected via a gateway to the central building technology controlled by LON. Users can determine technology preferences in individual rooms via operation interfaces.