All living things depend upon light for survival. The Mount Sinai Light and Health Research Center was created in 2021 to apply the science of light to improve health outcomes.
Among the many projects underway, we are looking at how robust patterns of light and dark improve sleep for people from many walks of life, from submariners to premature infants to senior citizens and, indeed, to all who work in offices, schools, and factories. We are developing lighting schemes to improve the lives of those living with conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and depression, and those who are undergoing cancer treatment or recovering from traumatic brain injury. We are also exploring the science and application of ultraviolet light to improve vitamin D production in populations who do not get enough sunlight, to control agricultural plant pathogens, and to serve as a germicidal disinfection strategy in the built environment. We are also developing new lighting technologies for safer transportation, from less glaring and more effective lighting for emergency vehicles to airport ground lighting that is better visible to pilots.
As Earth’s citizens, we are compelled to focus on lighting applications that are both effective and sustainable. This means developing new metrics for characterizing and quantifying light for a healthy planet, as well as developing design guidelines to assist those who are charged with implementing this research in real spaces. We very much hope you are intrigued with our new center and want to be part of its evolution and impact.