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Lux problem

Have you ever heard of winter blues? A lux problem is one of the reasons of winter blues. I try to explain it as easy as possible.

The lux unit
One lux (lx) is a unit of illumination. This unit is equal to one lumen per square metre. One lumen is a measure of the power of light perceived by the human eye. Human needs 10.000 to 100.000 lx daily. While residents of tropic countries can easily reach this amount of lx, others who live in sub tropic countries can’t. Since I live in the Netherlands so I call this a lux problem.

lx and certain situations
Down below, you see the lx at some situations.

  • Sunlight: 100 000 – 130 000 lux
  • Daylight, indirect daylight: 10 000 – 20 000 lux
  • Cloudy day 1000 lux 
  • Office light: 400 lux 
  • A very dark day: 100 lux
  • Twilight: 10 lux 
  • Dark Twilight: 1 lux 
  • Full moon: 0,1 lux 
  • Quarter moon: 0,01 lux
  • New moon without clouds: 0,001 lux
  • Cloudy night without moon: 0,0001 lux

lack of lx
In the autumn and winter, people only get 400 (office light) to max 20.000 lx daily. In the dark days of winter even only 100 lx. That’s why I always force myself to go out for a walk during a lunch break in order to get my lx daily portion. Cause, in the winter here in NL, the sun rises at 6.30 am and sets at 5 pm. This means that I go to work in a dark and come back home in the dark too. This also explains why many people suffer from winter blues.

lx simulation
Winter blues patients can apply for light therapy. The required amount of lx is simulated during this therapy. This could help the patients going through the dark days of winter.

Why this post?
Cause winter is not over yet while people have been fed up with it already. This winter has gained a record as the whitest one. This means there has been 15 years a go in the Netherlands that has snowed the whole winter long.


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