A Brand-new Recovery Experience with Nanoleaf Light Panels

February 2019

by Hanan Khay

A Brand-new Recovery Experience with Nanoleaf Light Panels

February 2019

by Hanan Khay

Reactivating fatigued people to improve their quality of life and performance (think.make.start).

Five students from the German Technical University of Munich, in collaboration with Nanoleaf, participated in the Think Make Start Hackathon with an idea for a brand-new recovery experience using light.

Every semester, the Technical University of Munich together with the Unternehmer TUM (The University’s own center for innovation and entrepreneurship) organizes a competition called Think.Make.Start, in order to take over the latest technologies and integrate them to solve relevant issues.

This competition attracts more than 300 applicants and only 50 students are selected to participate in this revolutionary journey.

The Prounge team, passionate about quality of life and mental performance, were motivated by issues linked to light pollution and sleeping disorders. Recent research suggests that over 80% of German employees suffer from sleeping problems, leading to a day-to-day exhaustion and performance decline at work. For their T.M.S. (Think.Make.Start) project they came up with the idea of an IoT portable furniture pod, where users can control the inner environment based on their real-time vital signs.

Initial problem evaluation and idea validation showed that the solution they were offering had potential. This was when they started to build a working prototype.

 

The final product is a private lounge that brings you a recovery experience and can be used for everyday power naps in offices—and can be conveniently placed in locations like airports, universities, hotels and other public spaces. It combines science, technology, and inspiration from nature. In fact, a real-time monitoring system controls the intelligent environment in terms of human-centric lighting, recovery-inducing noise, and temperature regulation.

“The Prounge offers a pure recovery experience for your everyday power naps.” Marco, Prounge Team

The team found an innovative way to improve recovery during the day by using light, as it has an emotional and biological impact on human beings. For instance, cold light is blueish and mostly found in electronic devices—and it keeps the human brain awake and alert. Warm light simulates the sunset, which signals the brain that it is time to rest.

Since the team wanted to work with innovative LED light technology, they researched the options that exist in the market and came across Nanoleaf. The most appealing feature that they found about Nanoleaf products was the design approach. It allows for very stylish and modular design integrations, flexibility of software customization, and also has a great community around the product.

How does the Prounge work?

The team integrated the Nanoleaf Light Panels in the design of the prototype as an artificial source of light which can be controlled based on the real-time needs of the user. The Nanoleaf Light Panels are integrated into the interior ceiling of the cabin.

On the software side, they programmed the Nanoleaf Light Panels to first follow the light cycle of the natural sunset—until the pod is completely dark. After that, they wake up the user by a reversed cycle (sunrise effect) and further energize him or her using a different light intensity based on lower light wavelengths. Overall, their approach focuses on using the Nanoleaf Light Panels to provide a human-centric lighting environment.

The data is measured by the Prounge Data Tool, where users can check stress level development and health improvement each time they use the Prounge.

After presenting their innovative idea, the Prounge team has won the MAKE category for the best hardware/software prototype.

With the support of T.M.S. staff, the startup environment of TU Munich and Nanoleaf as a partner for smart lighting, the team plans a small series production of about 10 units in the first run, starting in mid-2019.

Congratulations to the Prounge team, and best of luck for the future!

For any questions or further Information about the Prounge team and their vision, reach out to them via www.prounge.com or follow their Instagram channel @The_Prounge_Company.