Nightlife Made Sustainable: Street Lights That Match Evening Sensitivities Save Considerable Energy


Before - Typical HPS street lighting, not optimized for ocular sensitivity and energy savings. Image credit: Mesopic Street Lighting Demonstration and Evaluation Final Report, for Groton Utilities, Groton, Connecticut. (pdf)

I'm not really sure this is going to work out. Aesthetic sensibilities of the suburban class you know. Regardless it's a very clever and praiseworthy effort to make the city nightlife more sustainable. Researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), realizing that the human eye is most sensitive at night to the right end of the ROYGBIV spectral band, have figured out that street light bulbs, redesigned to match that highest of nighttime sensitivities, will save considerable energy: enough to prevent the emission equivalent of over a half-million tons of C02 per year in the USA. If implemented, it will make greener the Goth subculture After optimization. Image credit: Mesopic Street Lighting Demonstration and Evaluation Final Report, for Groton Utilities, Groton, Connecticut. (pdf)

Newswise records the discovery:

"In nighttime conditions, the human eye is more sensitive to short-wavelength light, which produces 'cool' tones like blue or green, as opposed to long-wavelength light, which produces 'warm' tones like yellow and red," said LRC Director of Energy Programs Peter Morante. "By replacing traditional, yellowish high-pressure sodium (HPS) lights with 'cool' white light sources, such as induction, fluorescent, ceramic metal halide, or LEDs, we can actually reduce the amount of electric power used for lighting while maintaining or even improving visibility in nighttime conditions."


Image credit:Gothic Myspace Graphics.

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Tags: Electricity | Living With Less