Green Lighting Blog – All things Green

Light Pollution: The View from Above

Many of us have admired a fantastic view from an airplane takeoff or landing. We find ourselves looking down on thousands of city lights shining like stars on the ground. As amazing as the view may seem, we are actually looking at a form of light pollution.

Light pollution is excessive or obtrusive artificial light, which includes light trespass, over-illumination, glare, and sky glow. These conditions waste energy, can disrupt ecosystems, cause adverse health effects and obscure stars and astronomical observations. With the need for safety, security and visual acuity at night, what can be done to minimize light pollution?

The majority of light pollution you see from above is considered sky glow. By definition, sky glow is the result of light that is emitted directly upward by luminaries or reflected from the ground, producing a luminous background. When outdoor lighting is poorly designed and installed, portions of light shine upward where it is not needed. Sky glow is the visible effect of wasted light and wasted energy.

Communities around the world have started enforcing “dark sky” regulations that restrict the amounts of light that can be directed upwards. The best way to control this upward sky pollution is to install lighting fixtures that direct light to needed areas, saving energy and reducing glare. A full cutoff fixture, (fig. 1.) when installed correctly, reduces the chance for light to escape above the horizontal plane. Their design minimizes the visibility of the lamp and reflector within, so the effects of glare are also reduced. It is also important for fixtures to be properly spaced, for even greater lighting efficiency.

Relates links Rapid Start Ballasts Electronic Sign Ballasts Electronic General Purpose Ballasts Electronic Fulham Workhorse Ballasts Magnetic Sign Ballasts Magnetic General Purpose Ballasts Lutron DImming Ballasts Compact Fluorescent Ballasts


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