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Lighting Research Center
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mullar2@rpi.edu
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Troy, N.Y. -  12/16/2013

New Light and Health Alliance at LRC

The Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has launched a new collaborative initiative—the Light and Health Alliance—to bridge the science of light and health to practical applications, and to provide objective information based on basic and applied research. The Alliance is led by Dr. Mariana Figueiro, LRC Light and Health Program director and associate professor at Rensselaer.

Light has a profound effect on health and wellbeing, including sleep, alertness, and performance. Humans need to be exposed to a sufficient amount of light of the right spectrum, for a sufficient amount of time, and at the right time, for the circadian system to remain synchronized with the 24-hour day. The LRC is researching light as a treatment for a variety of conditions, including jet lag, Alzheimer’s disease, insomnia and other sleep disorders, seasonal affective disorder and depression. Light can be used to improve sleep, alertness, and performance, along with overall health and wellbeing among the general population, and in populations with rigorous work schedules, such as submariners and night shift nurses. 

“Through this collaborative initiative, we will conduct evaluations, demonstrations, and research projects to develop practical devices and applications using light to improve people’s lives,” said Dr. Figueiro. “We will also hold seminars and present at conferences to educate key audiences and advance attention to light and health.”

The Light and Health Alliance is a collaboration among manufacturers, government organizations and NGOs, codes and standards bodies, along with architects, specifiers, medical facility managers and physicians, working to enable the broad adoption of lighting for human health by producing factual information based on basic and applied research and by visualizing future applications. Acuity Brands, Ketra, OSRAM SYLVANIA, and Philips are current members. Dr. Figueiro is seeking interested organizations to join this innovative program. Please email figuem@rpi.edu for details about becoming a member.


About the Lighting Research Center
The Lighting Research Center (LRC) at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is the world's leading center for lighting research and education. Established in 1988 by the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA), the LRC conducts research in light and human health, transportation lighting and safety, solid-state lighting, energy efficiency, and plant health. LRC lighting scientists with multidisciplinary expertise in research, technology, design, and human factors, collaborate with a global network of leading manufacturers and government agencies, developing innovative lighting solutions for projects that range from the Boeing 787 Dreamliner to U.S. Navy submarines to hospital neonatal intensive-care units. In 1990, the LRC became the first university research center to offer graduate degrees in lighting and today, offers a M.S. in lighting and a Ph.D. to educate future leaders in lighting. Learn more at www.lrc.rpi.edu.

About Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Founded in 1824, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is America's first technological research university. Rensselaer encompasses five schools, 32 research centers, more than 145 academic programs, and a dynamic community made up of more than 7,900 students and more than 100,000 living alumni. Rensselaer faculty and alumni include more than 145 National Academy members, six members of the National Inventors Hall of Fame, six National Medal of Technology winners, five National Medal of Science winners, and a Nobel Prize winner in Physics. With nearly 200 years of experience advancing scientific and technological knowledge, Rensselaer remains focused on addressing global challenges with a spirit of ingenuity and collaboration.