LESA - Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
Media & News

Media & News

Light and Intelligence on Forum for Illumination, Research, Engineering and Science

Ever since the simple light-emitting diode (LED) pulled Illumination into the electronic era, the digitization of Lighting Science initiated an expanding merger of illumination engineering with accelerating changes in other fields that are looking to impact how lighting systems, building systems and cities will evolve. Increasingly, the fields of machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) and applications of virtual reality (VR) are intersecting to transform Illumination Engineering.  The 2022 IES Research Symposium on Light and Intelligence brings together experts in research, design, and manufacturing to discuss these innovations and how these emerging fields will transform lighting and lighting design. Read more….

LESA presents at 2022 DOE Solid-State Lighting Workshop

Last week, current LESA Center research was featured in several sessions at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Solid-State Lighting Workshop, which was held virtually again this year and was co-sponsored by the Illumination Engineering Society.

In the Non-Visual Physiological Responses to Light session, John Hanifin of Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, presented Optimizing Tunable Lighting for Human Health.  The LESA Center is a collaborator on this newly funded research by the Department of Energy, which is led by Hanifin and the team at the Light Research Lab at Thomas Jefferson University and includes additional collaborators from Tulane University and Telelumen, LLC.

Session presentation link – Hanifin starts at 47:58

In the Next […]

GLASE Research Update: On the Technical Performance Characteristics of Horticultural Lamps

GLASE has published a comprehensive review of horticulture lighting system performance, including recommendations for both the lighting standards community and growers for navigating the complex and rapidly evolving horticulture lighting ecosystem. This work was performed by Cornell University and Rutgers University, members of the GLASE horticulture lighting consortium, of which RPI and LESA are founding members.

Timothy J. Shelford and Arend-Jan Both’s paper “On the Technical Performance Characteristics of Horticultural Lamps”

Spatially Adaptive Tunable Lighting Addresses Indoor Illumination Challenges

Beam-steerable lighting delivers the right light when and where you need it.
By Leah Scott 

(TROY, New York) Imagine walking into a conference room where there are no light switches or lighting control panels. Rather the light is “aware.” It automatically responds to where you are in the room, where others are and the tasks they are performing while smoothly adjusting illuminance to the precise lighting needed to optimize comfort, productivity and circadian function. In fact, you won’t have to do anything to the lights because the lighting designer is embedded in the smart lighting system. An automatic, beam-steerable lighting control system provides an intelligent, autonomous solution for estimating room occupants’ ideal illumination profiles and “sculpts” the light accordingly […]

DOE Funded Research Conducted Using LESA Lighting Protocols

Can tunable LED Lighting Benefit our Health? Researchers George “Bud” Brainard and John Hanifin at Thomas Jefferson University and David Blask at Tulane University will try to answer this question in a newly funded Department of Energy project. The purpose is to see how LED lighting compares with standard fluorescent light for the health of people on regular daytime work schedules. The research will be conducted at Jefferson’s Light Research Laboratory in Philadelphia using LESA’s lighting protocols.

Media Contacts
LESA Center: Leah Scott, scottl2@rpi.edu, 518-276-4010
Jefferson: Edyta Zielinska, edyta.zielinska@jefferson.edu, 215-267-3553.

LESA Virtual Industry-Academia Day Introducing the EBESS Institute and Perfect Pitch Session

Please join us for our Virtual Industry-Academia Day event introducing the new EBESS Institute and Student Perfect Pitch session on Thursday, June 17, 2021, (11:00 am – 1:00 pm ET). An overview of the Institute for Energy, the Built Environment, and Smart Systems (EBESS) will be presented by co-directors Dr. Robert Karlicek, Jr. and Dr. Dennis Shelden. The new Institute was recently announced by Rensselaer President, Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson in response to President Biden’s White House Leaders Summit on Climate. EBESS will be led by both the LESA and CASE centers,  with […]

Congratulations to GLASE’s Erico Mattos

Congratulations to GLASE‘s Executive Director, Dr. Erico Mattos, for being named to LEDs Magazine’s inaugural “40 under 40” list.  GLASE is the public-private partnership between RPI’s LESA and Cornell University, funded by NYSERDA, and focused on greenhouse lighting and systems management.  GLASE is working to develop the next generation of greenhouse technology in LED systems engineering, plant photobiology, plant physiology, and greenhouse environmental controls.

LESA Center Work on UVC Disinfection Gets National Recognition in U.S.News

Dr. Robert Karlicek, Director of the Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications (LESA) Center, was interviewed by HealthDay on the ‘unique system for using UVC light to sterilize masks in bulk developed at Rensselaer‘ as part of a feature article, UV Light Won’t Treat COVID-19 — But it Might Disinfect Medical Gear that appeared in USNews.com.

Read more“LESA Center Work on UVC Disinfection Gets National Recognition in U.S.News”

Unique System for Using UVC Light to Sterilize Masks in Bulk Developed at Rensselaer

LESA researchers in collaboration with the Center for Biotechnology & Interdisciplinary (CBIS)  at Rensselaer, developed a new device for making masks reusable in the fight against COVID-19. This project began at the request of longtime research partners at Mount Sinai. As the pandemic worsened in New York City, and the shortage of PPE deepened, they asked if Rensselaer could develop a way to make critical resources last longer without losing their effectiveness. The speed with which the Rensselaer team devised and built this solution expedites the possibility that it will be helpful in the fight against the pandemic. A design […]

LESA Researchers Published in LEUKOS for Work on Dynamic Changes in Light on Cognition

Arunas Tuzikas, Robert Karlicek and former LESA Researcher Lauren Hartstein completed human factor studies to better understaend how rapid, dynamic changes in light spectral power distribution can impact cognitive performance and comfort. Their findings on the ‘Impact of Dynamic Changes in Light Spectrum Power Distribution on Cognitive Performance & Wellbeing‘ were recently published in LEUKOS – The Journal of the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES).Read more“LESA Researchers Published in LEUKOS for Work on Dynamic Changes in Light on Cognition”

LESA & GLASE Experts Offer Insights into Controlled Environment Agriculture in LEDs Magazine Blog Series

The LESA Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and the Greenhouse Lighting & Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium experts from Cornell University participated in a four-part guest blog series with LEDs Magazine between July and October. Throughout the series, they discussed research methods, applications, industry trends and future farming insights for controlled environment agriculture. The blog series was extremely popular generating significant interest around LESA and GLASE research initiatives. Two of the four blogs were ranked among LEDs ‘Top 5 Blogs of 2019’ – including the number 1 spot.Read more“LESA & GLASE Experts Offer Insights into Controlled Environment Agriculture in LEDs Magazine […]

LESA Researchers Published in PLOS ONE for Work on Optimizing Sleep and Alertness

Agung Julius and John T. Wen’s research findings were recently published in PLOS ONE for their work on time optimal entrainment control for circadian rhythm regulation. They have developed ‘new ways to optimize sleep for alertness through light exposure‘ and were featured on Rensselaer News. Their work is part of ongoing research at LESA, resulting in several subsequent publications around circadian function, circadian phase shift, and the effects of healthy lighting funded by the Army Research Office, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Department of Defense. Read more“LESA Researchers Published in PLOS ONE for Work on Optimizing Sleep […]

Executive Director of GLASE Named One of Produce Grower Magazine’s Produce Pioneers

Erico Mattos named one of only three produce pioneers by Produce Grower magazine.  ‘Options to optimze, Mattos is leading a charge to find more efficient environmental controls for greenhouse growers.’  His expertise and leadership to the GLASE consortium have steadily helped ushered in a renaissance of innovation in both his approach and thinking for controlled environmental agriculture (CEA).

Read more“Executive Director of GLASE Named One of Produce Grower Magazine’s Produce Pioneers”

LESA Research Published in HDIAC Journal for Work in Circadian Rhythm Regulation

Drs. Agung Julius and John T. Wen, and PhD student researcher Jaiwei Yin from Wen’s Research Group published in the Journal of the Homeland Defense & Security Information Analysis Center (HDIAC) Volume: 6 Number: 3 – Biometric Nanosponges as a Broad-Spectrum Countermeasure to Biological Threats for their work on “Optimization of Lighting and Sleep Schedules for Circadian Rhythm Regulation.”

Read more“LESA Research Published in HDIAC Journal for Work in Circadian Rhythm Regulation”

LESA Visiting Scholar’s Work Referenced in Horticultural Lighting Newsletter

Cheif Researcher Jurga Miliauskiene from the Institute of Horticulture at the Lithuanian Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry was mentioned in the November issue of LEDs Horticultral Lighting monthly newsletter for the research work she recently completed at LESA. Miliauskiene’s work on the effects of  pulsed lighting for CEA qulaity-crop production, was the subject of a recent guest blog for LEDs Magazine as well. Read more“LESA Visiting Scholar’s Work Referenced in Horticultural Lighting Newsletter”

New publication on Lighting in Health from LESA Faculty Researchers in Biomedical Signal Processing and Control

Drs. Agung Julias and John Wen‘s methodological approach to assess circadian processes in subjects who have recently experienced traumatic brain injury, using regularly gathered intracranial temperature data. The health effects of circadian regulation are profound, yet assessments of circadian processes are often infeasible in the neurotrauma intensive care unit (ICU).

Read more“New publication on Lighting in Health from LESA Faculty Researchers in Biomedical Signal Processing and Control”

UNM Study Gauges Effectiveness of Light Therapy to Reshape Circadian Rhythms

University of New Mexico researchers and their colleagues from the LESA Center have demonstrated a new technology for gauging the effectiveness of light therapy to synchronize human circadian rhythms as a potential treatment for insomnia, mood disorders and other health problems.  In a report published online in the IEEE Journal of Translational Engineering in Health and Medicine (and set to lead the journal’s December issue), the team reported on a pilot study using the Smart Lighting Clinical Testbed at UNM Hospital. The lighting, sensing and control systems used were based on a system first installed in the Smart Conference Room Testbed at the LESA Center.
Read more[…]

LESA Center Cited in Horticulture Daily for Advanced Research Modules

Lighting research consortium brings the CEA community industry-ready technologies. Without light, plants can’t grow. The continued advance of controlled environment agriculture means that sunlight is often supplemented and in some cases completely replaced by artificial lighting. It works well, but there’s one caveat: artificial lighting can take a lot of energy. Reason enough for the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to kickstart the Greenhouse Lighting and Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium with $5 million in funding in 2017.

Read more“LESA Center Cited in Horticulture Daily for Advanced Research Modules”

Solutions to the Camera Conundrum in Healthcare Using ‘Indoor LIDAR’ for Improved Patient Safety and Protection

— A small network of low cost non-imaging sensors enhances critical patient monitoring without the invasiveness of cameras. —

(Troy, New York) Health and wellness care facilities often struggle to balance trade-offs between affordable, necessary patient monitoring and patient privacy.  Camera surveillance, though useful in many situations, is not always the best option for monitoring occupants in a facility where preserving privacy is also an important function.  Researchers at LESA (the Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute) are solving the camera conundrum in healthcare settings by demonstrating how a small network of low cost time-of-flight sensors use the speed of light to […]

New Horticulture Light Modules Developed at LESA Accelerate Indoor Plant-Growth Research

New lighting modules being developed at the LESA Center in collaboration with the Greenhouse Lighting & Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium, shows real promise for advanced control over the spectral distribution of color-mixing lights for horticulture research. The Tunable Irradiance Growth Efficacy Research (TIGER) Light can be used to dynamically adjust spectrum and intensity in order to evoke specific physiological responses from the plants. The six-wavelength modular fixture design can be “daisy-chained” to flexibly cover a wide range of growth area dimensions.

As light is a source of both information and energy for plants, creating spectrally uniform precise ‘light algorithms’ by controlling the timing and spectral power distribution is critical for […]

New Horticulture Light Modules Accelerate Indoor Plant-Growth Research

— LESA and GLASE are taking the guesswork out of tunable irradiant growth efficacy research for indoor farming–

New lighting modules being developed at the Lighting Enabled Systems & Applications (LESA) Center in collaboration with the Greenhouse Lighting & Systems Engineering (GLASE) consortium show real promise for advanced control over the spectral distribution of color-mixing lights for horticulture research.

Read more“New Horticulture Light Modules Accelerate Indoor Plant-Growth Research”

Former GE Global Research Sr. Scientist Newest LESA Center Faculty Researcher

The LESA Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is proud to announce the addition of Rensselaer Professor Peter Bonitatibus from the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology as its newest faculty researcher. Bonitatibus’ work in nanoparticle engineering will support LESA’s research in high refractive index materials as part of the Center’s fundamental research. To learn more, click here.

Former GE Global Research Sr. Scientist Peter Bonitatibus Newest LESA Faculty Researcher

Bonitatibus’ work in nanoparticle engineering will support LESA’s research in high refractive index materials as part of the Center’s fundamental research.

(Troy, New York) The LESA Center at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute is proud to announce the addition of Rensselaer Professor Peter Bonitatibus from the Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology as its newest faculty researcher.

Read more“Former GE Global Research Sr. Scientist Peter Bonitatibus Newest LESA Faculty Researcher”

Creating Healthier Spaces with ‘Smarter’ Disinfecting LEDs

–The convergence of continuous disinfection and IoT/Connected Technologies to be focus of  presentation at 2019 Strategies in Light 20th Anniversary Conference–

Troy, NY (February 25, 2019) – Imagine the lighting in a food processing facility detecting the presence of E. coli, or lighting in a gym detecting MRSA, or lighting in a kitchen detecting salmonella. Then imagine that lighting system safely and effectively targeting and killing those deadly germs. The promising new frontier of smart technologies optimizing the antibacterial capacity of LEDs will be the focus of a presentation by two experts in the field.

Read more“Creating Healthier Spaces with ‘Smarter’ Disinfecting LEDs”

LESA Researcher Receives DOE Manufacturing Innovator Challenge Award

Rensselaer doctoral graduate and LESA researcher wins 2019 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Manufacturing Innovator Challenge competition. The Manufacturing Innovator Challenge competition is a new contest launched by the DOE last October and Deagen is the first recipient for his submission entitled, “Layer-by-Layer Stamping for Developing Next-Generation Optical Waveguides.”Read more“LESA Researcher Receives DOE Manufacturing Innovator Challenge Award”

LESA Researcher First to Receive DOE Manufacturing Innovator Challenge Award

(Troy, New York) Rensselaer doctoral graduate and LESA researcher Michael Deagen (’18) is the winner of the 2019 U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Manufacturing Innovator Challenge competition for crowdsourced solid-state lighting (SSL) manufacturing concepts. The Manufacturing Innovator Challenge competition is a new contest launched by the DOE last October and Deagen is the first recipient for his submission entitled, “Layer-by-Layer Stamping for Developing Next-Generation Optical Waveguides.”
Read more“LESA Researcher First to Receive DOE Manufacturing Innovator Challenge Award”

LESA Researcher Explores LEDs for Photons, Physiology and Food

Dr. George “Bud” Brainard with colleagues from Thomas Jefferson University explore how the color, intensity, and distribution of light can now be controlled with unprecedented precision, enabling light to be used both as a signal for specific physiological responses in humans and plants and as an efficient fuel for fresh food production in recent article in Nature Magazine. To learn more, click here.

LESA’s Pod Sensors Enable Powerful Time of Flight Tracking

The LESA Center has pioneered and patented the use of lighting-based ToF for privacy preserving indoor occupant position measurement. LESA’s precise pattern recognition methodology led to the development of extremely robust algorithms that enable its ToF sensors to detect and respond to changes in occupancy instantly as part of a $2.7M Department of Energy (DOE) ARPA-E award to develop new, cost effective occupancy sensing ToF integrated circuits. LESA has now successfully designed and tested compact, low-cost ToF “pod” sensors for localized occupant counting and tracking. The pod sensors use an array of 9 state-of-the-art, single pixel ToF sensors to cover a wide area. They detect the movement and height of objects in their wide field of view allowing people to […]

LESA’s Pod Sensors Enable Powerful Time of Flight Tracking

Time of Flight (ToF) sensing uses the speed of light to measure distance. It plays an essential role in technologies ranging from safe, autonomous self-driving cars to smart phones with facial recognition capabilities. The LESA Center has pioneered and patented (US9,363,859) the use of lighting-based ToF for privacy preserving indoor occupant position measurement.

Read more“LESA’s Pod Sensors Enable Powerful Time of Flight Tracking”

LESA Researchers Publish Work on Growth Dynamics in Red Lettuce

Dr. Tessa Pocock and Dr. Matthew Urschel published in agronomy 2018 special issue ‘Sensing and Automated Systems for Improved Crop Management’ with an article entitled, “Remote Detection of Growth Dynamics in Red Lettuce Using a Novel Chlorophyll a Fluorometer”. To learn more, click here.

3MT® Competition Winner Doctoral Candidate @LESA


LESA doctoral candidate Prachi Sharma (’18) who placed first in the Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) competition held as part of RPI’s 2nd Annual Graduate Research Symposium in 2017, has gone on to place 2nd at the Northeastern Association Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) regional 3MT® -automatically qualifying her for inclusion in the national competition in Washington, D.C., to be held in December.

Read more“3MT® Competition Winner Doctoral Candidate @LESA”

3MT® Competition Winner Doctoral Candidate at LESA Center


LESA doctoral candidate Prachi Sharma (’18) who placed first in the Three Minute Thesis (3MT®) competition held as part of RPI’s 2nd Annual Graduate Research Symposium in 2017, has gone on to place 2nd at the Northeastern Association Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) regional 3MT® -automatically qualifying her for inclusion in the national competition in Washington, D.C., to be held in December.

Read more“3MT® Competition Winner Doctoral Candidate at LESA Center”

Greenhouse Lighting Research Helps Shape Future Farming @LESA

LESA senior researcher and plant physiologist Tessa Pocock was asked to participate as an expert on greenhouse lighting in a recent panel discussion for agricultural business owners and local farmers hosted by New York Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner.  The ‘Ag-Tech Roundtable’ was part of a larger initiative aimed at creating an open dialog of finding solutions to modern agriculture problems affecting crop production, efficient and sustainable farming methods, best-practices and industry insights.

Read more“Greenhouse Lighting Research Helps Shape Future Farming @LESA”

Greenhouse Lighting Research Helps Shape Future Farming @LESA

LESA Senior Researcher and plant physiologist Tessa Pocock was asked to participate as an expert on greenhouse lighting in a recent panel discussion for agricultural business owners and local farmers hosted by New York Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner.  The ‘Ag-Tech Roundtable’ was part of a larger initiative aimed at creating an open dialog of finding solutions to modern agriculture problems affecting crop production, efficient and sustainable farming methods, best-practices and industry insights.
Read more“Greenhouse Lighting Research Helps Shape Future Farming @LESA”

Transforming Healthcare and Wellbeing Through Lighting @LESA

 LESA and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) sponsored a workshop in 2016 to explore pathways to define and promote the adoption of lighting systems specifically for healthcare environments. The aim was to initiate an important dialog among stakeholders on the changes in modern healthcare interior lighting applications, and subsequent  white paper detailing the outcomes and contributions of the workshop participants.
Read more“Transforming Healthcare and Wellbeing Through Lighting @LESA”

Transforming Healthcare and Wellbeing Through Lighting @LESA

Transforming Patient Health Care and Well-Being Through Lighting

LESA and the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) sponsored a workshop in 2016 to explore pathways to define and promote the adoption of lighting systems specifically for healthcare environments. The aim was to initiate an important dialog among stakeholders on the changes in modern healthcare interior lighting applications, and subsequent  white paper detailing the outcomes and contributions of the workshop participants.

Read more“Transforming Healthcare and Wellbeing Through Lighting @LESA”

Industry-Academia Days Accommodations

Hilton Garden Inn

Block Name: RPI LESA Industry Day
Nightly Rate: $129
Block Deadline: March 12th or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first
Address: 235 Hoosick St, Troy, NY 12180
Phone Number: (518) 272-1700
Web Link: http://bit.ly/2Bex5me

Best Western Plus Franklin Square Inn

Block Name: LESA Industry Day
Nightly Rate: $134
Block Deadline: March 21st or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first
Address: 1 4th St, Troy, NY 12180
Phone Number: (518) 274-8800
Web Link: https://www.bestwestern.com/en_US/customer-service.html#Reservations

If you experience difficulties booking your accommodations at either location, please contact the hotel property directly and provide them with the block name.

Please note that the event venue is the Hilton Garden Inn. The Best Western Plus at Franklin is conveniently located to both the the event venue […]