Circadian tuning with metameric white light: Visual and non-visual aspects

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Aderneuer, T.
Stefani, O.
Fernandez, O.
Cajochen, C.
Ferrini, R.
The growing awareness of the biological effects of artificial light on humans has stimulated ample research. It is now widely accepted that asynchrony between artificialand natural light-dark cycles can elicit severe detrimental health effects. New research has been devoted to lighting solutions that dynamically change their color to mimic spectral changes of daylight and to account for human needs. However, in some situations, the visual properties of light must be preserved: For example professional TV video editors and shift workers who must work under standardized lighting conditions to do color correction in post-production. We have investigated the possibility to tune circadian effects using white lights that are spectrally different but nonetheless have similar color coordinates thus appear as a similar white tone. Our simulation results indicate that it is possible to modulate circadian light effects by combining LEDs for neutral white (4000 K), a widely used white tone for indoor lighting in europe. The results also show that the solutions combining single-color LEDs do however not meet the quality criteria from the visual point of view because their color rendering ability decays to unacceptable low levels. Combining narrowband LEDs with a broadband white LED improves the color rendering quality and we show how far circadian light effects can be tuned according to common theoretical models. The aim is to reflect daylight situations with artificial lighting, thus having a high melatonin suppression in the morning and low melatonin suppression in the evening. As a consequence our aim is to show what maximum and minimum circadian effect is possible with the same set of LEDs.
Publication Reference
Lighting Research and Technology, Dec 2020.