Feeds

Lighting bods blind designophiles with LED-powered lounge lamps

Bright lights and butterfly wings - obviously makes sense to someone

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

100% Design At the 100% Design show in London's Earls Court this week, the great and the good from architecture and interior design spent their time gazing into lights. Not just any lights, either: LED lights covered in a thin film based on butterfly wings.

LEDs can produce very intense point source illumination, which is great for cyclists and the plentiful supply of fancy anglepoise lamps on show at 100% Design. Yet for more natural and subtle uses, diffusing the light evenly is the way to go.

Besides its various tape and film technologies, 3M has been toying with LED tech for a while and although various projectors have come and gone, it's been busy developing lighting solutions that are more about the glow than the dazzle.

3M Air LED lighting

3M Air LED lighting showing coloured reflections from the dichroic film container – click for a larger image

On show were several recent products that have just become available in the UK. The Air is a circle of uniform light which uses easily replaceable LEDs along the rim. These illuminate the diffusing band that’s made of materials 3M has specially crafted to deliver a lightweight fixture with even, glare-free light distribution. Available in 3ft, 5ft and 7ft diameters, the Air might not sound like much, but it is really rather impressive when you see it in front of you.

3M Air LED lighting with Dichroic film

Air LED lighting from outside the Dichroic box (left) and rolls of Dichroic film (right) – click for a larger image

The Air makes an even bigger impression when viewed through the dichroic film that the display unit was covered with. This amazing transparent film changes colour depending on your angle of view. This colour shifting across the spectrum adds a sense of fascination to an ordinary light source. Inspired by butterfly wings, which apparently have no pigment, they just reflect light in interesting ways to produce the colours we see. Dichroic film works on similar principles and seems destined to become a regular feature on shop windows and hotel lobbies.

3M Lightfalls LED lighting with mirror film

3M Lightfalls LED lighting, the base of the box also shows the highly reflective mirror film
Click for a larger image

Lightfalls is a feature lamp system devised with designer Todd Bracher. It combines mirror-like film with LED lighting and a cleverly shaped lighting reflector. The mirror film is claimed to be over 98 per cent reflective and is fashioned in the Lightfalls enclosures to enable light from one module to "pour" into adjacent modules. When arranged in clusters it creates an impressive feature. More from 3M architectural here.

100% Design has dedicated international pavilions where countries can promote their own design flare. A truly eye-catching feature was the wall of lanterns from the Taiwanese contingent. This sychronised lighting smoothly changed colour and were described in the accompanying blurb as “Social Design”.

Taiwan Social Design display

Taiwan's Social Design initiative seems like an illuminating prospect – click for a larger image

It describes Taipei thus: “The human aspect of the city is like a piece of software with [a] wonderfully designed interface that allows the non-human hardware of the city to function smoothly.”

It goes on in a similar vein – apparently this sort of design idea is to connect those two aspects. And if that means it’s supposed to use design and tech to make things look nice so people feel better, then I’d say it succeeds.

DelightFull Trombone lighting display

DelightFull stand with horn lighting display

Portuguese lighting specialists DelightFull are no strangers to adding a human - and humorous - touch to its illuminating designs. The company was out to blow its own trumpet with its stand at the show, which succeeded in living up to its name. For something DelightFull, click here. ®

100 Per Cent Design is ongoing this week for trade visitors and students and is open to the public on Saturday 21 September 2013 at London's Earls Court exhibition centre.

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
So, Apple won't sell cheap kit? Prepare the iOS garden wall WRECKING BALL
It can throw the low cost race if it looks to the cloud
Samsung Gear S: Quick, LAUNCH IT – before Apple straps on iWatch
Full specs for wrist-mounted device here ... but who'll buy it?
Apple promises to lift Curse of the Drained iPhone 5 Battery
Have you tried turning it off and...? Never mind, here's a replacement
Now that's FIRE WIRE: HP recalls 6 MILLION burn-risk laptop cables
Right in the middle of Burning Mains Man week
HUGE iPAD? Maybe. HUGE ADVERTS? That's for SURE
Noo! Hand not big enough! Don't look at meee!
AMD unveils 'single purpose' graphics card for PC gamers and NO ONE else
Chip maker claims the Radeon R9 285 is 'best in its class'
Chumps stump up $1 MEELLLION for watch that doesn't exist
By the way, I have a really nice bridge you might like...
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.