The energy saving potential of occupancy-based lighting control strategies in open-plan offices: the influence of occupancy patterns

C. de Bakker, Tom van de Voort, A.L.P. Rosemann

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)
151 Downloads (Pure)


Occupancy-based lighting control strategies have been proven to be effective in diminishing offices’ energy consumption. These strategies have typically worked by controlling lighting at the room level but, recently, lighting systems have begun to be equipped with sensors on a more fine-grained level, enabling lighting control at the desk level. For some office cases, however, the savings gained using this strategy may not outweigh the costs and design efforts compared to room control. This is because, in some offices, individual occupancy patterns are similar, hence the difference in savings between desk and room control would be minimal. This study examined the influence of occupancy pattern variance within an office space on the relative energy savings of control strategies with different control zone sizes. We applied stochastic modeling to estimate the occupancy patterns, as this method can account for uncertainty. To validate our model, simulation results were compared to earlier studies and real measurements, which demonstrated that our simulations provided realistic occupancy patterns. Next, office cases varying in both job-function type distribution and office policy were investigated on energy savings potential to determine the influence of occupancy pattern variance. The relative energy savings potential of the different control strategies differed minimally for the test cases, suggesting that variations in individual occupancy patterns negligibly influence energy savings. In all cases, lighting control at the desk level showed a significantly higher energy savings potential than strategies with lower control zone granularity, suggesting that it is useful to implement occupancy-based lighting at the desk level in all office cases. This strategy should, thus, receive more attention from both researchers and lighting designers.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2
Number of pages18
Issue number1
Early online date21 Dec 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2018


  • stochastic modeling
  • occupancy spread
  • energy efficiency
  • convergence analysis
  • individual occupancy
  • smart lighting
  • occupancy sensors
  • office buildings
  • Individual occupancy
  • Occupancy sensors
  • Smart lighting
  • Convergence analysis
  • Office buildings
  • Energy efficiency
  • Occupancy spread
  • Stochastic modeling


Dive into the research topics of 'The energy saving potential of occupancy-based lighting control strategies in open-plan offices: the influence of occupancy patterns'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this