Best ways to use LEDs
Benedetti and colleagues learned that the lighting of places where people are working influences how well they sleep at night. The team reports that they “tested the effects of optimized dynamic daylight and electric lighting on circadian phase of melatonin, cortisol and skin temperatures in office workers. We equipped one office room with an automated controller for blinds and electric lighting, optimized for dynamic lighting (= Test room), and a second room without any automated control (= Reference room).
Jiang and teammates studied humans’ responses to multicolor light in the context of space travel, but their findings are likely to be relevant in other situations. The group shares that “The goal of this study . . . was to test whether multicolour lighting can improve people’s psychological state in an isolated and confined environment over a period of seven days. . . . [participants] were randomly divided into two groups: one group that was exposed to multicolour lighting and a control group, which was exposed to a static, monotonous white interior. . . .
Circadian lighting helps us feel tip top, keep our stress levels in check, and do whatever mental gymnastics are required of us to our full potential. Neuroscience research is packed with insights into how to “circadian light.”
The Mason team’s findings support calls to keep light levels low in spaces where people are sleeping. The group reports that their “laboratory study shows that, in healthy adults, one night of moderate (100 lx) light exposure during sleep increases nighttime heart rate, decreases heart rate variability (higher sympathovagal balance), and increases next-morning insulin resistance when compared to sleep in a dimly lit (<3 lx) environment.
New insights and tools
A new version of an ever useful circadian stimulus calculator is available.
The color and intensity of the artificial light we experience is an importance influence on how we think and behave. Neuroscience research details how designers can use artificial light to positively affect human beings’ experiences at home, work, school, or wherever else they might be and whatever they might be doing.