Bright Answers for everyday Lighting Questions
June 18, 2015
For years now, we have held a strong passion for improving our knowledge on the subject of lighting. We tirelessly research – industrial magazines to academic journals to independent reviews – just so we remain on the cutting edge of lighting innovation. So we are taking this opportunity to address a couple of questions we have come across on some topics.
Why don’t LEDs ‘blow out’ like other types of lamp?
LED lamps function differently from Incandescents (The lamp type typically associated with ‘blowing out’). Incandescents work by sending hundreds of volts through a razor thin filament at hundreds of thousands of miles per second. These lamps then ‘blow’ because overtime – as the lamps are switched on and off – the volume and speed of electricity burns off the ‘Tungsten’ on the filament up until its weakest point (that’s why it usually happens as it is switched on).
The legend goes that if the light is left on, it remains lit indefinitely. The so-called ‘Centennial lamp’ claims to have been on since 1905 and was given to the Livermore fire station in 1973, it is apparently so famous, a web cam was set up so people can log on to see that its still on. Check it out!
LEDs do not use a filament system to produce light. It is a compilation of extremely small light emitting diodes (L.E.D), magnified in plastic casing. Individually they do not produce as much light as an incandescent, but as a collective, they produce more light, using less energy (as they give off less heat). So they will not ‘blow’ because there is no filament to be blown. At the worst, they will flicker due to issues with the driver, lose colour quality or shut off through electrical faults situated in the fittings.
Why is it hard for me to sleep with the lights on?
This is a slightly more complicated question as every human body is different, and many factors explain why most find it hard to sleep with the light on. It mostly has to do with how our bodies react to light and the interpretations it makes from the colours trapped within it.
The simple explanation – As your intake of light decreases, it signals the brain to begin ‘shutting down’ or ‘slowing down’ the body, and does so by releasing hormones that induce sleep (hence why we tire nearer the end of the day – as it gets darker). When the intake of light increases, it reduces the production of these hormones in the body – it then becomes harder to get to sleep without those hormones even if you’re really tired (‘Jet lag’ then is the body getting used to a new cycle of hormone release).
Some healthy advice? If you have some problems getting to sleep in regards to light – at a certain point in the evening, dim the screen of your LED devices, perhaps turn of the television an hour earlier, it helps your wake/sleep cycle. It is also important to get as much natural light during the day as possible, to pick up the entire colour spectrum of light in a natural balance that is only provided by sunlight.
Any more questions on lighting that we can answer for you? or perhaps some interesting facts to share? Leave a comment with us!
-Discover Magazine – http://www.centennialbulb.org/cam.htm.
-Wydea – https://youtu.be/sn9J51w5k2g
-Sleep Academy – http://sleepacademy.org/2013/03/05/bright-lights-bring-poor-sleep/
image – http://inform.tmforum.org/sponsored-feature/2015/05/all-the-information-at-the-tip-of-your-fingers/