Experimental Personal Ring Light Halo Challenges Perspective on Wearable Luminaires

Beaming light rings are no longer a specialty of divine beings and angels, one research group is bringing personalized halos to mere mortals.

A designer wants to explore the interaction of personal lighitng at different scenarios. Nan created Halo to learn how individuals react to personal lights. (Halo/LEDinside)

Try picture this: a beaming ring lights up your face and your outfit wherever you go, and is color tunable using a controller.

Birthed from a personal lighting experiment from research group Responsive Environments, MIT Media Lab, Halo by researcher and designer Nan Zhao makes a colorful aura halo accessible to anyone.

Popular Improv features Halo. (Halo/LEDinside)

Nan Zhao created Halo for her PhD study, aiming to explore the way light interacts with individuals’ time, activity, feeling and outfit.

The lightweight aluminum ring and LED lights frame the user’s face and shoulder, allowing the user to literally see the world in a different light. The aluminum ring can also be altered for different users’ body shapes. Meanwhile, the user can decide the angles of Halo, be it sitting in front of the face or circling around user’s head (like an angel perhaps).

Halo can be adapted for different scenarios, coloring up dull landscape, or shedding light on rainy day. The user can control the color via Bluetooth from smartphone.

Similar to smart LED bulbs, Halo also has varied default lighting scenarios. For photography and theater effects, there are happy, sad, angry, anxious, evil, or passionate. The user can also create customized context lights.

Halo changes the user’s appearance simply by changing the light pattern. Meanwhile, it also challenges existing preconceptions that lighting is not an accessory.


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