Daylighting Post-Occupancy Evaluation Study

Baylor University Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation



Photo of Jae Yong Suk, Ph.D.

Jae Yong Suk, Ph.D.

Assistant Professor

University of Texas at San Antonio

Photo of Helena Zambrano, AIA

Helena Zambrano, AIA

Overland Partners



Daylighting is a key strategy to energy efficiency and improved occupant comfort, health, and productivity in buildings. However, providing desired amount of natural light while avoiding excessive thermal and visual discomfort caused by sunlight penetrations has been challenging in practice. The design of the Baylor University Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation in Waco, TX was driven by environmental performance. This LEED Gold project houses a mix of open spaces, instructional facilities, and offices in 285,000 sf floor area. Among a number of sustainable features, the atrium skylights and light scoops facing various orientations play a critical role in creating comfortable but interesting luminous environments. The paper first addresses the skylight and light scoop design process which attempted to provide glare free natural light and capture different light color temperatures throughout a day. Extensive computer based daylighting simulations were performed to determine optimum configurations, orientations, and finishes of the light scoops to block, reflect, and re-direct various sun angles. In 2017, a post-occupancy evaluation study was performed for an entire day from sunrise to sunset at the Spring Equinox. Electrical lighting inside the central atrium was turned off in order to measure natural light levels only. Various light sensors and data loggers were utilized to accurately document and analyze daylighting performance throughout the entire atrium space. High Dynamic Range imaging technique was also utilized to document luminance distribution and light color temperatures of the skylights. The simulated daylight levels and the field measured illuminance and luminance values were thoroughly compared and analyzed. The measured data shows that daylighting design goals were successfully achieved. Findings will help develop a new framework for evaluating the performance of daylighting design techniques in built projects. Also, the importance of collaborative efforts in between practice and academia was highlighted.


Building envelope is one of the most important components in architecture as it defines overall aesthetic of a building and filters exterior environment such natural light, wind, sound, and heat

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The selected case study, Baylor University Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation, is located in Waco, Texas. The building was completed in 2015 and it is a four

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Post Occupancy Evaluation Method

In order to overcome the weakness of the previous field measurement study, advanced data collection techniques were utilized as follows. A full day site visit was performed to collect both

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Analysis of Measured Data

Illuminance and luminance data has been collected for one entire day. Clear sky condition was desired to observe maximum daylighting performance of the skylight and light scoop. Weather forecast information

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Comparisons Between Measurments and Simulations

Both interior and exterior illuminance values were thoroughly compared between measured and simulated values in order to understand the actual daylighting performance in dynamic sky condition. During design phase, illuminance

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Conclusion and Future Work

Entire day’s daylighting post-occupancy evaluation study was successfully performed at Baylor University Paul L. Foster Campus for Business and Innovation in Waco, TX. Advanced luminance and illuminance data collection methodologies

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The authors appreciate Baylor School of Business to make all the coordination efforts on building access, data collection, and architectural lighting controls.

Rights and Permissions

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