Lighting can transform one’s mood, health and productivity. So says Ketra, the innovative LED lighting company that recently officially launched a system that embraces the natural cycles of the sun...and its users’ daily lives.
What Is It?
An integrated system of lighting, keypad interfaces (including smartphone/tablet apps) and software, Ketra’s lighting products include light bulbs, lamps and luminaires, which communicate wirelessly to user-controlled interfaces to determine the light. The lighting mimics the natural lighting environment, and is timed to the user’s geographic location (for example, the lighting can wake the user with a warm sunrise glow at the appropriate time, or re-create sunset light). The goal is to provide the benefit of natural light, including stimulated brain function, alignment of users’ circadian rhythm, and even increased productivity. It’s a particular concern, as the average American spends 21 hours inside daily.
“From the beginning of time, humans have evolved under two natural light sources: the sun and firelight. Light from these sources aids in regulating physical processes and helps maintain mental well-being by aligning the human body’s circadian rhythms,” explains Nav Sooch, Ketra’s CEO, who developed the semiconductor technology in each of the company’s fixtures. “As the survey data and bodies of other research reveal, natural light offers myriad wellness benefits. It stands to reason that today’s commercial and residential spaces should offer this high-quality light indoors. Ketra does just that.”
How Does It Work?
“The ability to perfectly simulate sunlight, while maintaining consistency across every bulb in the space, is driven by the technology in each Ketra bulb. A proprietary semiconductor measures the bulb’s color 360 times a second, continuously ensuring that the light output across every bulb in the space is the exact color temperature of natural light, measured in degrees Kelvin,” explains the company.
Also of interest to designers: The light bulbs last up to three decades in the average home, which is longer than standard LEDs, and also “maintain the precise color control not only throughout their lifetime, but they maintain the exact output as each other, so all bulbs are always emitting the same exact amount of color and light, another edge over standard LEDs that typically vary in color and change color as they age.”
What Are the Benefits?
The system offers home automation, integrating with home automation systems, shade control, security systems; personalized light, with a tunable-spectrum LED that spans infinite color choices, including saturated colors as well as pastels (the brand points out that the system “easily adds color to the home without having to repaint”); and a range of dimming, including levels as low as 0.1 percent (many LEDs dim to just 10 percent).
The company is partnering with the Well Living Lab (a collaboration between Delos and Mayo Clinic), which explores the connection between health and the indoor environment. Though Ketra’s products made their official residential application launch this month, they have been rolling out largely commercial offerings over the past five years, appearing in projects for Google, Facebook, Pinterest, Whole Foods, BuzzFeed, VICE and others.