Smart lighting systems meet elegant design
Interior illumination is a field of innovative developments. Four major trends are currently emerging: lamps as furniture, intelligent lighting management systems, integrated light sources and smart lighting technologies. All these trends combine form and function with elegant design. But going beyond this, the latest lighting systems can have an influence on both the spatial ambience and our health.
In his minimalist design for the Lighting Pad Lounge, manufactured by Nimbus, designer Dietrich F. Brennenstuhl pairs smooth wood with rough surfaces and harmonious lighting control with smart acoustic elements. (Photo: DesignRaum)
Is that another lamp or a piece of furniture?
Designer luminaires have always been more than just a source of light. Alongside their purely practical benefits, it is their visual characteristics that are paramount. Today this aspect is being expanded with new functions: Luminaires with different light modes or smart features offer unimagined flexibility. In the future, we will own multifunctional light objects that transcend the original concept of a designer lighting fixture by far.
The Lighting Pad Lounge by Nimbus is full of surprises: The minimalist design combines smooth wood with rough surfaces and harmonious lighting control with intelligent acoustic elements. Glare-free LEDs mounted in the soft, sound-absorbing fleece radiate in the desired light colour to create the ideal lighting mood. A sensor or an app controls the LEDs and can also be used to adjust the height of the pendant light without touching it. Paired with elegant details, this extensive scope of features blurs the boundaries between luminaire and furniture to create an innovative light object.
Intelligent lighting management systems that go beyond on or off
Smart homes enjoy the benefits of smart lighting. It has been possible to control intelligent illumination with a smartphone or smart light switches for some time now, but the sensors keep on getting more and more sophisticated. Smart lighting is increasingly connected to voice assistants, and infinitely adjustable light sources adapt to daylight and the human biorhythm – the keyword here is human-centric lighting.
Individual lighting management systems enable residents to programme the intensity of the illumination and its colours to create an atmosphere of well-being that reflects their personal preferences. The lighting technology developed by specialists such as Elektra or Casambi transforms smart home lamps into transmitters and receivers. This allows extensive networks to be created in building complexes, such as hotels or office facilities, and enables them to be controlled intelligently.
Integrated lighting systems for an atmospheric effect
Light creates accents – even without a visible lamp. Thanks to ultra-slim LED solutions, light sources can be integrated into furniture, transforming the ambience in a room. The Loox lighting system by Häfele gives ceiling beams, bed frames, cupboards and shelves a new look that you would never have imagined possible.
Indirect sources of illumination behind furniture foster a pleasant atmosphere in private residences, retail outlets, offices and hotels. Hidden in drawers or display cabinets, they provide a quick overview of inaccessible places. In the kitchen, they ensure a safe working environment for keen home cooks. The dimensions of the lighting system are tailored to the furniture, making it easy to install.
Indirect light sources, especially ultra-slim LED solutions, create a pleasant spatial ambience. (Photo: Jean-Philippe Delberghe on Unsplash)
The right light improves health
The influence that light has on human beings can hardly be overestimated. The intensity and colour of light have a direct effect on our hormonal balance: While bluish daylight helps us to wake up in the morning, warm white light can calm us down.
By contrast, UV rays have an entirely different effect on people and nature. Specific wavelengths of UV-C light kill germs and viruses and are already in use in hospitals and laboratories. The ZAPP! air steriliser by Waldmann harnesses precisely this property and removes 99.99 per cent of all the viruses in the air inside a room. With its modern design, it is also suitable for use outside medical facilities and able to take hygiene to a new level in offices and private homes.
The future of lighting technology
Great progress has been made since the invention of the light bulb. New materials and innovative technologies are constantly reinventing light and how we interact with it. From product presentations to hotels and offices all the way through to the individual rooms in our homes, there are countless different scenarios for their use.
The specialists and developers behind these ideas always have their focus on people and their needs. Light’s significant influence on our organism and well-being will forge future trends in lighting technology. Whether it is a complex slighting conceptsystem or a single smart home lamp, function follows more than just form – it is also always guided by the individual and his or her personal needs.
Interested in seeing more ideas and designs for lighting up interiors? Discover the key lamp trends for 2021 here.