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What is ANSI lighting code

An ANSI lighting code, also known as ANSI C-code, is a standard set of regulations and guidelines developed by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) for the design, installation, and performance of lighting systems.

Importance of ANSI lighting code

The ANSI lighting code plays a crucial role in ensuring the safety, efficiency, and effectiveness of lighting installations. It provides manufacturers, architects, engineers, electricians, and designers with a common language and framework to follow when planning, implementing, and evaluating lighting projects.

The code covers various aspects of lighting systems, including lamp types, fixture classification, electrical connections, mounting heights, light distribution, and energy consumption. By complying with the ANSI lighting code, stakeholders can ensure that lighting installations meet the required standards, reduce risk, save energy, and enhance visual comfort and productivity.

Key components of the ANSI lighting code

The ANSI lighting code consists of several key components:

1. Lamp specifications: The code defines various lamp types, such as incandescent, fluorescent, and LED, specifying their characteristics, performance ratings, and compatibility with different fixtures and applications.

2. Fixture classification: It categorizes lighting fixtures based on their intended use, installation location, environmental conditions, and protection against moisture, dust, and other contaminants. This helps stakeholders select appropriate fixtures for their specific needs.

3. Electrical connections: The code provides guidelines for proper wiring, grounding, and electrical protection to prevent hazards, such as shocks, short circuits, and fire risks. It ensures that electrical connections are safe, reliable, and comply with national electrical codes.

4. Light distribution: It outlines requirements for defining and measuring light distribution patterns, including beam angles, illuminance levels, color rendering, and glare control. These guidelines help achieve optimal lighting performance and visual comfort in various spaces.

5. Energy efficiency: The ANSI lighting code promotes the use of energy-efficient technologies and design strategies to minimize electricity consumption and carbon emissions. This includes recommendations for lighting controls, daylight harvesting, and the use of high-efficiency lamps and fixtures.


The ANSI lighting code serves as a valuable resource for professionals involved in the lighting industry. It provides standardized guidelines for the design, installation, and evaluation of lighting systems, ensuring compliance with safety, performance, and energy efficiency standards. By adhering to this code, stakeholders can create lighting installations that are not only visually appealing but also safe, sustainable, and cost-effective.


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