Lamps and Lights

Friday, August 24, 2007

I was browsing through a site that offers a wide variety of products from ceiling fans to lamps. Under each of the items are arrays of product types. Say the lamps for instance, under the said product are different kinds of lamps, from floor lamps to torchieres. I was reminded somehow of my teacher in Philosophy of Science who once remarked that reading under a yellow light is better than reading under white light. I think what he meant was that reading under an incandescent lamp which usually radiates yellow light is better than reading under the fluorescent one which generally releases white light. This is so because the incandescent bulbs emit continuous light waves while the fuorescent ones produce sporadic waves. While indiscernible to the human eye, fluorescent lights are said to flicker thus straining the eyes and creating the strobe effect.

As to the white and yellow lights, it is said that the yellow light is created in the the absence of the blue color. The blue hue is intense that it stimulates a reaction we call "glare". In fact, the French, knowing of the said "glare", had the blue removed from the output spectrum of their vehicles' front lamps. Besides, since blue has the shortest wavelength and it easily scatters, it makes on-road vision very difficult.

Moreover, a study published five years ago found out that our biological clock is most responsive to narrow band of wavelengths from 466 to 477 nanometers (nm), which are close to the blue of a clear sky. The so-called ganglion cells in our eyes detect the blue hue and send signals to the brain that it is already morning thus ending a sleep or a circadian drift. The downside however is that bluish light is often detected from computer screens which oftentimes sabotages sleep schedules. The blue light reduces the brain's secretion of melatonin. Melatonin is usually brought about by dusk and darkness to help trigger and maintain sleep.

Now here is something that we can use for our advantage. Aside from a freshly brewed coffee or perhaps a couple of cancer sticks, the blue-light therapy can be used to keep ourselves late at night. While the yellow-light therapy is something that we can use when we want to doze off easily.


titalyn said...

yellow light??? yeah, right ! as though you needed any help in that department, huh, dundee? he,he! ( sorry, just can't resist...)

Novice Blogger said...

haha! well, that's something you don't know about me tita. i'm insomniac at a certain level. i could stay awake late at night as easy as i can drowse. i think sleeping is even harder than staying awake. :)

Lighting said...

Wow I never knew that blue lights keep you awake. My custom computer has a blue light kit in it. And sometimes I can't fall asleep due to it being right next to my bed. I am guessing that it is the blue light. Thanks for the great post. Very informative