Mood lighting has been around since the hi-fi 50s. Dim, soft lighting would set a mood, usually for something romantic. But now that LEDs are replacing traditional tungsten incandescent bulbs, there is a new market niche for lighting that can have an actual physiological effect on users. Lights with a high component of blue spectrum keeps you alert and focused, and lowering the blue components can help you relax and ease into a sleepy state.
Add to that remote-control operation, even by smartphone or internet, and you create an appliance that is far more interactive than a mere bulb. The future of controlled lighting is just starting.
Hunter Communications Original News Source:
New York Times
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Excerpt: " 'There’s a tremendous potential for LED lighting to go beyond illumination,' said John Strainic, General Electric’s general manager for consumer lighting. 'We’re asking people to think about lighting as more than just an impulse purchase.'
Because of the LED manufacturing process, the light that the technology creates is weighted toward the blue end of the spectrum. That is true whether the LED is used in a light bulb, a tablet or a television display.
That blue light has its advantages: Blue stimulates a photoreceptor in the eye that reduces melatonin production and helps a person stay awake.“You have to start thinking of light as a drug,” said Terry K. McGowan, the director of engineering for the American Lighting Association, a trade group.
That is why Lighting Science, an LED manufacturer, is now selling Awake and Alert, an LED lamp that keeps people pumped up by pumping up the blue. Conversely, the company’s Good Night lighting product reduces the blue output, helping people sleep. This summer, Lighting Science will offer its Rhythm Downlight, a lamp controlled by a smartphone app that adjusts blue light based on a user’s sleep schedule.
'The Awake and Alert lamp does not look brighter, but our circadian system sees it as such,' said Robert Soler, Lighting Science’s director of lighting research. 'We always felt that there was so much more you can do with light than just increase vision.'
Philips sells its own range of energy-enhancing lights, including its Wake-up Light and — to combat winter blues — the goLITE BLU, a panel of blue LEDs."