Shortlisted entries 2013
Fog may alter how we see LED light. Pilots landing on the runway and ships navigating coasts are currently guided by the old energy-guzzling incandescent bulbs and there is a global push to use efficient, longer-lasting, and environmentally friendly LED technology instead. These lights are especially important in poor visibility, but fog may distort LED light colour and alter its brightness in strange ways, affecting how pilots and navigators see it. We need to characterise and understand such phenomena before LEDs can be officially used in these vital transport applications. Looking up into a 10 m tall laboratory cloud chamber, we create chilly real-world fogs and observe the light shining through from candidate LED lamps (pictured) of all colours using both sophisticated light-measuring instruments as well as the all-important human eye. Eventually your ship or airplane may be guided to safety by this LED science!