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Light / Lighting

Light, health, sleep, and the buildings you live in

      The Light Therapeutic – article on current research into the effects of light on health, with far-reaching implications for the design of buildings and cities, especially healing environments. What is most startling is the way our bodies respond to light. Gloomy winter days are known to trigger …

Light pollution and the decline of starry nights

    Opinion: Bright Nights, Big Problems – recent opinion piece in National Geographic on the growing rarity of true darkness, due primarily to our unthinking use of artificial light.   Because of the rapid growth of light pollution over recent decades, most Americans under 40 have never known real …

Mirrored ductwork extends daylight

  Mirror Duct System – post on Transmaterial about a duct system that’s lined with reflective aluminum mirrors which can “extend light as much as sixty feet inside a structure.”   Developed by Tokyo-based Material House, Mirror Duct System is a completely passive technology that contributes to CO2 reduction by …

Light is the medium – James Turrell

A Year of Light and Space – anyone who’s interested in James Turrell’s work with light, space, and perception will have ample opportunity to see it in person this year. Exhibits of his installations will open in Los Angeles (LACMA), Houston (Museum of Fine Arts), and New York (Guggenheim Museum – …

Light, sleep, melatonin, and cancer

    Blue light has a dark side, an article from Harvard Medical School, and a 12-min video clip of Russel J. Reiter, M.D. PhD of University of Texas talking about Melatonin’s role in Cancer are both worth your time, especially if you’re involved in the design of healthcare facilities. The …

Cool roofs – Blue roofs

    Cool Blue Roofs May Be The Secret To Energy Savings – on the amount of energy savings that could be realized if more buildings had ‘cool’ roofs, roofs that reflect rather than absorb sunlight. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory’s Heat Island Group says a national campaign could save …

Light transmitting concrete facade

    World’s first facade featuring light transmitting concrete opened to public – media facade designed by Carpus & Partner for RWTH Aachen University in Germany uses LUCEM-manufactured translucent concrete panels, part of their Lichtbeton series. Each panel is fitt[ed] with colour-changing technology, with the colours becoming brighter approximately one …

Firefly-like structure brightens LEDs

  Fireflies Inspire Brighter LEDs – using the jagged scales on a firefly’s abdomen as a guide, researchers from Belgium, France, and Canada have developed an overlay for LED’s that increases light output by 55%.  Via ThomasNet’s Industry Market Trends.   … the jagged-scale modification can be made post-production on conventional LEDs. …

Piano’s Menil receives AIA 25 Year Award

      AIArchitect article explains why Renzo Piano’s first U.S. project has won this award for a building that exhibits consistent excellence in function and design over time.   The Menil Collection, in Houston, was selected for the 2013 AIA Twenty-five Year Award. As Renzo Piano’s, Hon. FAIA, first …

Light installation of responsive LED rocks

    LED-Embedded Rocks Used to Illuminate ‘Digital Campfire’ – Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde’s light installation, called Crystal, consists of 700 rocks on a mat. Each rock … is made out of a unique salt which grows in perfect geometric shapes around two LEDs. These are wirelessly charged via a power …

Better outdoor lighting

      e-News #88: Outdoor Lighting, More Light is Better…Or is It? – the latest newsletter from Energy Design Resources has good information about balancing the need for illumination at night and minimizing light pollution, including tables of recommendations from design guidelines.  EDR is California-based, but the data applies no matter …

Soft white light without flicker or hum

  New fluorescent lighting won’t flicker, shatter, or burn out – It’s called FIPEL technology (stands for Field-Induced Polymer ElectroLuminescent).  Scientists at Wake Forest University have developed “an entirely new light bulb” that’s quiet, won’t shatter, is efficient, and lasts a very long time. The device is made of three …

Daylight without windows

  New technology is piping sunlight into windowless rooms – South Korean and British scientists have developed patented technology that delivers “natural daylight to windowless spaces … without heat gain or loss.” A mirror tracks the sun throughout the day, reflecting its rays onto a parabolic dish, which then focuses …

Best Northern Lights in 50 years

  Nature’s Disco: See the Northern Lights – the 4:26-min video clip in this post is definitely worth a look, especially for those of us who’ve never seen the this amazing phenomenon in real life.  Photo Credit: Moyan_Brenn/flickr Scientists predict this winter to be the best in 50 years to experience …