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Airplane Lighting Design: The Best Way of Preventing Jet Lag

It is well known that lighting plays a major role in maintaining the body clock. So onboard cabin lighting can help passengers in preventing jet lag. That is why airplanes are beginning to incorporate cabin lighting systems. The new Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which has just finished flight testing (Aug 2011) and will soon be used by airlines, has incorporated an LED system simulates daylight and a nighttime sky.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner

It is quite surprising it has taken this long for everyone else to jump onto cabin light therapy to help passengers, when Emirates Airlines has had this sort of airplane lighting since 2004 (read more about it here: Emirates: The Pioneers of Using Cabin Airplane Lights to Avoid Jet Lag).

LED lights allow for very slow fades, which simulates a more realistic sunrise and sunset onboard a plane. This slow fade allows passengers to fall asleep and wake up more naturally while on a flight – preventing jet lag. The lights are programmed to match the time of the destination, so when passengers arrive their body clocks will be more in sync and less tired.

Read our post for travel lights you can buy here: Light Therapy: Overcoming and Beating Jet Lag

Lighting is the main factor in battling jetlag, but there are a few other areas in which Boeing has redesigned to help passengers feel more refreshed when arriving at their destination.

Boeing 787 Dreamliner

Other ways of how to prevent jet lag and feel more relaxed onboard:

    • Cleaner air with better air filtration system
    • Higher levels of humidity
    • The pressure within the 787 plane is 6,000 feet instead of 8,000 which gives people onboard 10% more oxygen

source: Science Daily


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Emirates: The Pioneers of Using Cabin Airplane Lights to Avoid Jet Lag

Airplane Lights Jet Lag

With the launch of the Boeing 787 Dreamliner more planes will have light therapy on board. This is the best way on how to avoid jet lag.  It is surprising that it has taken this long for more planes to adopt this method as Emirates Airlines has been using light therapy on their planes since 2004.

Emirates was the first airline to use airplane lights that naturally simulate the changing of time onboard from daylight to night. The cabin lights reflect the time of the destination passengers are arriving in, making the transition to their body clocks more relaxing. The lights come complete with constellations fitted into the ceiling panels as seen in the pictures.

Jet Lag Lighting

Maurice Flanagan, Emirates’ Group President and Vice-Chairman, on avoiding jet lag:

“All through our lives, our bodies are conditioned to react to light, and so reset the internal clock. It’s impossible to overstate the impact this has on our comfort and well-being. Spending time under artificial light is reckoned to starve the brain of the stimulus needed to regulate the clock.” 

image credits: Doug, Julien

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