Artificial Skylights

We know the beneficial effects of light on our bodies. Ideally, we’d all be working outside in natural light, keeping our circadian rhythms in sync and our vitamin D levels high! But since that isn’t the case for most of us, research such as this is critical.

Ten years in the making, the artificial skylight takes the same natural transformation light takes as it goes through Earth’s atmosphere and applies it on a smaller, lab-created level. With just millimeters of material, the light recreates Rayleigh scattering, the process that makes our sky appear blue. And you can see, the skylights appear blue but there is no blue light involved!

(from weburbanist.com)

The effect causes the same lighting we appreciate outside — the same color temperature, the same saturation, the same overall quality. The inventor, Professor Paolo Di Trappani, used rendering software and a virtual spectrophotometer to achieve these results. And what great results they are! You can almost feel the warmth.

(from weburbanist.com)

(from weburbanist.com)

OLED: Light that keeps the vampires away

LG Chem released an important PSA for the world: OLED (organic light-emitting diode) lighting can help us fight the inevitable vampire attacks.

This video is a fun play on an important topic — how light affects our body, and how technology can help us achieve artificial lighting that is closest to natural light. OLEDs use organic compounds between electrodes to emit light, and are used mostly in televisions and cell phones. These are two devices that have come under the spotlight in terms of how they affect the body. As OLED does not need a backlight, perhaps using this technology in those devices could help decrease the detrimental effects of blue light on human circadian rhythms and the brain.

One manufacturer has designed a desk lamp using OLED technology. It’s a bit pricey but considering the biological implications, do you think it could be worth it?

One fairly obvious disadvantage to OLED is the lifespan — organic matter has a considerably smaller lifespan than plastics. Technology is sure to catch up, but how can you see using OLED? Outside of fighting vampires, that is.