Background of the need of circadian lighting: The sun is the strongest source of light and our bodies are designed to follow its natural rhythms. In the past, we’ve used artificial lighting to brighten up our homes and workplaces. Various light sources have contributed to this in their own way. As technology has evolved over a period of time, the focus has shifted from quality of light to energy efficiency but this has come at the cost of our health. New research is showing that improper artificial lighting can disrupt our natural body clocks and this is having a detrimental effect on our well being.
We’re now beginning to see a shift in the way that we light our spaces. The concept of circadian lighting is gaining traction as we recognise the importance of following our natural body clocks. This type of lighting design mimics the natural light from the sun, using different wavelengths and intensities of light to aid our daily rhythms.
Circadian lighting has been shown to have a number of benefits for our health, including improved sleep, reduced stress levels, and increased productivity. There are also established potential benefits for those suffering from conditions such as seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Various industries, from healthcare to business, are beginning to explore the potential benefits of lighting that follows the human body’s natural sleep-wake cycles. Known as circadian lighting, these strategically designed systems may have the power to positively impact human health, alertness, productivity, and more.
The circadian lighting concept follows the human circadian rhythm, the 24-hour internal clock. An area of the brain called the hypothalamus controls each person’s circadian rhythm by receiving signals from the eyes that report day and night. The hypothalamus in turn controls the amount of melatonin released to correlate sleep with darkness and wakefulness with light. Research shows that light affects our visual and non-visual systems, and that electric light affects circadian rhythms. Circadian lighting is the concept that electric light can be used to promote human health by reducing the effect of electric light on the human circadian rhythm. Researchers have found that long-term exposure to certain wavelengths of blue light at a certain intensity can have a negative effect on melatonin production.
The concept of using light to influence the human circadian rhythm is new to the field of lighting: all aspects of this exciting new topic are still being studied and the current data is still in its infancy. There are currently three approaches to electric light to implement a circadian lighting system: intensity tuning, color tuning, and stimulus tuning. Intensity tuning is the best-known and most cost-effective solution for circadian lighting. Luminaires maintain a fixed correlated color temperature (CCT), while the intensity (brightness) of the luminaire is adjusted using a controlled dimming system to correlate with the time of day. Luminaires are set to a low intensity early in the morning, move to a higher intensity as the day progresses, and decrease to a lower intensity at night. Color tuning involves changing the brightness and CCT to mimic the day/night cycle.
Cooler color temperatures (from 4,000K to 10,000K) are experienced when the sun is highest in the sky and people are most alert during the day. Cooler CCTs are therefore used in spaces and times when it is appropriate to promote alertness and attention. Warmer color temperatures (from <2700K to 3500K) represent daylight hours when the sun rises and sets when people are asleep or awake. Circadian lighting systems are set to adjust based on the CCT we typically observe at any given time of day. Stimulus tuning is a light technology that replaces “bad blue” with “good blue” wavelengths of light. This circadian lighting approach more closely mimics the daylight spectrum. Stimulus-tuned fixtures can be programmed to reduce blue light wavelengths during the evening/night hours to limit melatonin suppression without changing CCT. As with color matching, this lighting method is most effective in conjunction with intensity tuning.
WELL standards for circadian lighting: The International WELL Building Institute (IWBI) established the WELL Building Standard to guide the design of buildings and communities to promote comfort, health and well-being. IWBI offers circadian lighting standards for workspaces, breaks, living environments and learning spaces. The L03 feature, Circadian Lighting Design, is introduced to provide users with appropriate light exposure to improve circadian rhythms. To receive points for this part, all regularly occupied spaces in the project must have lighting reaching a minimum of 120 EML (melanopic lux equivalent).
Melanopic lux is measured in a vertical plane at the passenger’s eye level (about four feet above the ground). The L03 feature is a GOOD effort to develop a metric for melanopic vision that takes into account not only visual perception but also the biological, non-visual effects of light. By offering circadian lighting standards for various spaces, IWBI helps designers develop lighting solutions that support people’s visual and non-visual needs.
As more studies and market sectors explore the uses and benefits of circadian lighting, designers will continue to refine how the concept can support the health and well-being of people in a variety of settings.
If you’re interested in exploring circadian lighting for your home or workplace, there are a few things to consider. Firstly, one need to make sure that you have the right type of light sources and luminaire.
Secondly, you need to think about how you’re going to control the light. There are a few different options available, including daylight sensors, timers, and smartphone apps. Whichever method you choose,it’s important to make sure that the light is turned off at night so that you can get a good night’s sleep.
Lighting controls includes controlling the intensity as well as the correct wavelengths of light at different times of the day. Use of incorrect wavelength and light intensities can have detrimental effect on the well being and health,
Finally, you need to consider the cost of installing and running circadian lighting system. LEDs are more energy efficient than traditional light bulbs, so they should save you money in the long run. However, the initial outlay may be more expensive.
Circadian lighting is an exciting new development in the world of lighting. If you’re interested in exploring it for your home or workplace, there are a few things to consider. However, the potential benefits for your health make it worth considering.
If you’re looking for more information about circadian lighting, please contact us. We’d be happy to discuss with you about the different options available – both in terms of design and solutions, and help you find the perfect solution for your needs.
We can use light to our advantage by mimicking the sun’s natural cycles, and in this article, we’ll explore how to do just that!
What is circadian lighting?
Circadian lighting is a type of lighting that is designed to mimic the natural light cycle and qualities of the sun. This type of lighting has been shown to have a number of benefits for human health, including improved sleep quality, increased alertness, and reduced stress levels.
Circadian lighting design
We are excited to announce our newest blog series all about circadian lighting design! This series will explore the impact of light on our daily lives and how we can use light to improve our health and well-being.
Circadian lighting is a relatively new field of study that is gaining popularity in both the scientific and design communities. Circadian lighting aims to mimic the natural light cycles that our bodies are tuned to, in order to promote better sleep, improved mood, and increased alertness and productivity.
There is still much to learn about how light affects our bodies, but there is already a wealth of evidence showing that proper lighting can have a positive impact on our health. We hope that this series will help to raise awareness of the importance of circadian lighting and inspire more people to incorporate it into their homes and workplaces.
Circadian lighting products and solutions
If you’re looking for a way to improve your well-being, you may want to consider investing in circadian lighting. This type of lighting is designed to mimic the natural light cycles of the sun, and it can have a number of benefits for your health.
Circadian lighting products are available in a variety of forms, from lamps to bulbs to fixtures. And there are a number of ways to use them, depending on your needs. You can use them to improve your sleep habits, boost your energy levels, or enhance your mood.
There are a number of different circadian lighting products on the market, so it’s important to do your research before making a purchase. But if you’re looking for a way to improve your well-being, circadian lighting is definitely worth considering.