What is Daylight Harvesting?

What is daylight harvesting

You may have noticed that we have started to talk about ‘Daylight Harvesting’ in some of our more recent blog posts.

Whilst some of our readers may be very familiar with the term, we realise that there may be some who are not sure what ‘Daylight Harvesting” means, so we thought we should give an explanation.

In simple terms ‘Daylight Harvesting’ is a method of saving the energy costs associated with lighting.

Over the last few years we have seen several new technologies become available, which have dramatically reduced the energy consumption of lighting systems. The most significant being the introduction of LED lighting.

However, it was soon realised that the best way to save energy is to only use it when you must.

Historically, office buildings and workplaces had light systems installed, which were switched on for the entire time that the building was occupied. Even if there was plenty of sunlight coming in through the windows.

Daylight Harvesting makes use of the available sunlight.

Daylight sensors are incorporated into the lighting system, which can detect daylight. Manufacturers, such as Hytronik have developed sophisticated sensors, which can differentiate daylight from light generated by a LED source.

As the level of sunlight rises and falls throughout the day, the output level of the LED lighting system is adjusted accordingly. A further level of intelligence is incorporated so that the daylight sensors only activate the LED lighting if someone is in the room, or work area.

Daylight harvesting. Light does not activate because there is enough sunlight.
Fig 1:

Sensor detects someone has entered the room and there is plenty of sunlight. Lighting is not activated.


Daylight harvesting. Light activates because there is not enough sunlight.
Fig 2:

Sensor detects someone has entered the room and there is not enough sunlight. Lighting is activated.


Daylight harvesting. Light is adjusted according to the available sunlight.
Fig 3:

The work space is occupied. As the sunlight rises and falls throughout the day, the level of artificial lighting is adjusted accordingly.


More advanced systems incorporate tuneable white LED drivers so that the colour temperature can also be altered throughout the day to create a more natural lighting experience, which is in tune with our circadian rhythms.

Research has shown that the colour temperature of light can affect our level of productivity at work.

We discuss this in more depth in our blog post “Why Lighting Design Matters”.

At first, the idea of incorporating 'Daylight Harvesting' into an LED lighting system may seen daunting. However, ADM’s expert team is on hand to guide you through the range of Hytronik products. Simply call our office on 1300 236 467.

You will most likely be pleasantly surprised at how simple the solution is. The beauty of a Hytronik solution is that is compatible with most MEAN WELL LED drivers.


14 November 2018