Light Engines

Light plays a major role in our lives; we simply can’t live without it. More than just a necessity, the nature of light and what emits light affects our efficiency, mood, ease, and comfort. In this project, we’re studying specific light sources, or light engines, can enhance the user’s ability to carry out that task.

I have to design a light engine in the context of comforting oneself while sleeping.

Exploration of Light Sources @ CMU

To begin, I took notes during class discussions and personally explored the concept of color temperature.

Key Takeaways:

I walked around Carnegie’s campus, observing the campus architecture and how the buildings utilized illumination. Below are observations that I found particularly interesting/unique.

My peers and I eventually brought together our observations into a collection of all images. As I walked around, one thing I couldn’t help but realize was just how broad light engines could physically be. This lead us to the next leg of our experimentation process.

Ikea Run

I went with a few other Design classmates to Ikea to find alternative lightbulbs and to explore light structures that already existed. I organized all the forms I saw into categories.

Spherical Forms
Long Cylindrical Forms
Short Cylindrical Forms
Miscellaneous Forms

Form Exploration — 1

Paper Exploration — 1

Exploration — 2

After playing with paper forms with no regard to anything but structure, I began moving more towards designing with the intent to improve sleep.

One thing I discovered was the something called the Himalayan Salt Lamp. Because of its salt-based composition, many claim these lamps to be able to:

  • help you sleep (air ionization)
  • boost your mood
  • improve air quality

While some of these claims have no empirical data backing them up, people have reported improvements in their lives because of the salt lamp. Because I’m confined to paper, I decided to observe the physical attributes of the salt lamp.

[image of salt lamp w/ notes]