Tuning light’s color and intensity to the right values, using insights from cognitive neuroscienc
Warmer light tied to better moods
Task lighting and concentration linked
Another reason to manage light color and intensity
Pedersen and Johansson investigated how motion activated street lights influence pedestrian behavior. They found that participants in their study of motion activated lights in a simulated outdoor environment “walked significantly slower under [initially] dimmed than static lighting conditions, even after the illuminance had increased. . . . The effect was seen both before and after the increase to full light.
A team lead by Heo has found more evidence that seeing blue light, particularly at night, is energizing. The researchers “investigated the immediate effects of smartphone blue light LED on humans at night. . . . Each subject played smartphone games with either conventional LED or suppressed blue light from 7:30 to 10:00PM (150 min). Then, they were readmitted and conducted the same procedure with the other type of smartphone. . . . use of blue light smartphones was associated with significantly decreased sleepiness . . . and confusion-bewilderment . . . and increased commission error.”
The lighting in hospital intensive care units influences patients' wellbeing, even a year after they are discharged from the hospital. Researchers have found that “With light adapted to the time of day, health even improves for patients who are barely conscious when they are admitted for care. . . . In order to counterbalance the traditional ICU department with low levels of daylight and nights when lighting is frequently turned on [researchers tested an] experimental environment with so-called cyclical lighting that changed during the day. . . .
Prior state matters, a lot
Bedrosian and Nelson studied how being exposed to light at night influences wellbeing and mood. They share that “Many systems are under circadian control, including sleep–wake behavior, hormone secretion, cellular function and gene expression. Circadian disruption by nighttime light perturbs those processes and is associated with increasing incidence of certain cancers, metabolic dysfunction and mood disorders. . . .
Perceptions trump reality and moods matter