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Lighting & Health

Your eye does not just see, you have a totally separate system that responds to the spectral distribution of light and effects your hormones and body clock. Even some blind people may still have functioning “non-visual” receptors.

Next generation lighting design will take into account the biological responses to create more productive, healthier environments. This will use dynamic light sources such as ChromaWhite™ from PhotonStar™. Increased connectivity of lighting will lead to personalised lighting solutions.

Alertness & blue light

Exposure to ~460nm light causes an immediate alertness response that lasts about 30 minutes – rather like “visual caffeine”. Installing this in a car might reduce accidents, but blue light from your tablet in the evening may prevent sleep.

Circadian rhythm

Your circadian (latin for “of the day”) rhythm controls many functions of your body. It is entrained by the changing spectral distribution of light – adjusting your body for the environment that it is in. Effectively we are perceiving the movement of the sun across the sky as refraction changes both the colour and spectral distribution.. This is our signal to perform our basic functions and responses
You have probably suffered circadian rhythm disruption – we also call it “Jet Lag”. You feel disoriented, disrupted and tired. Exposing yourself to daylight is one of the best cures. The recent Mars Mission simulations demonstrated extreme circadian rhythm disruption through inappropriate artificial light causing many physical and mental health issues. Following this, NASA will be installing a circadian lighting system on the International Space Station in 2016.
Light & Health - ChromaWhite 2.0

Photo-biological lighting technology

The aim is to be like daylight:

  • Varying the spectral distribution* to reduce/increase blue content
  • High CRI and large GAI

Time based controls are essential.

* Changing the spectral distribution is not the same as varying the CCT. Varying the CCT will visually appear like daylight changes but will not necessarily cause a photobiological response.

Increased connectivity of lighting will lead to personalised lighting solutions, although these will also need adapt the light that is emitted by devices such as TVs and tablets at different times of day.

Photo-biologically optimised systems will use dynamic light sources such as the award winning ChromaWhite LED smartlamps and modules.