Healthcare, Office

Full spectrum LEDs outperform standard LEDs, study shows

Two people at desks in a large room illuminated by full spectrum LED lighting
Research conducted by the highly-respected Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics in Stuttgart found that full spectrum LED lighting delivers greater visual comfort and an improved perception of naturalness – including colour, condition and quality – compared to standard LED products.

FULL SPECTRUM LED lighting outperforms conventional fixtures, according to a study into visual impact and perceptual performance by German scientists.

Research conducted by the highly-respected Fraunhofer Institute for Building Physics in Stuttgart found that full spectrum LED lighting delivers greater visual comfort and an improved perception of naturalness – including colour, condition and quality – compared to standard LED products. 

Researchers concluded that unrivalled colour rendering for different colour temperatures can be provided by full spectrum LEDs.

 The soon-to-be published Fraunhofer IBP study incorporates a technical comparison of the LED spectra to daylight spectra, a literature review addressing the effect of light spectra on humans, and a psychological study with 83 persons in an office setting. 

Each participant was tested for one hour in one of four different lighting settings comparing full spectrum LEDs with conventional LEDs on various aspects such as visual comfort, naturalness, concentration, general glare rating, sleepiness, alertness and glossiness.

Full spectrum LEDs are usually categorised as those emitting light similar in composition to natural sunlight. 

The research was in association with Japanese LED maker Nichia, which has developed a range of full spectrum LED modules with specific benefits. 

Its Optisolis technology mimics sunlight but without producing any ultraviolet light – which can degrade precious artefacts – making it suitable for museums, art galleries and jewellery stores among other retail settings.

Dr Ulf Meiners, managing director at Nichia Germany, told Lux: ‘There’s limited research on the impact of full spectrum LEDs on people’s perception, with a focus instead on the psychological effects of natural and artificial light in general. 

‘As a pioneer of true daylight white LED emitters, Nichia welcomes these findings. We hope new studies are developed to further demonstrate the performance of full spectrum LEDs on perception, behaviour and health.’