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A critical examination of perceptual and cognitive effects attributed to full-spectrum fluorescent lighting

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Full-spectrum fluorescent lighting (FSFL) has been credited with causing dramatic improvements in vision, perception and cognitive performance as compared with other fluorescent lamp types. These effects are hypothesized to occur because of similarity between FSFL emissions and daylight, which is said to have evolutionary superiority over other light sources. This review, covering 1945 - 98, critically considers the evidence for these claims. In general, poorquality research has resulted in an absence of simple deterministic effects that can be confidently attributed to fluorescent lamp type. Promising avenues for lighting- behaviour research include investigations of cognitive mediators of lighting- behaviour relationships, and flicker rates and colour rendering effects on visual processing, appearance judgements and affect. Good lighting solutions are more complex than lamp type specification.
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Keywords: FULL-SPECTRUM LAMPS; LIGHTING; PERCEPTION; PERFORMANCE; SPECTRAL POWER DISTRIBUTION; VISION

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Institute for Research in Construction 2: McGill University

Publication date: February 20, 2001

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