Delta premieres a photon shower that fights jet lag
March 1, 2013

photon wieden kennedyWe’ve previously reported on Vitamin-C showers that allegedly improve your health, but Delta’s photon shower is a whole new Star Trek world.

The airline company exhibited this jet lag-fighting, light-therapy chamber as a concept demo at this week’s TED Long Beach Conference.

The inspiration for the photon shower came from Delta’s advertising agency Wieden + Kennedy New York, drawing upon neuroscience and sleep research by Professor Russell Foster of Oxford University. After Wieden + Kennedy pitched the idea to Delta, London production company Nexus built the shower, Fast Company reported.

The shower allows weary plane passengers to enter their travel information before stepping into the chamber, where they are bathed in a particular light sequence that mimics the effects of sunlight.

But what does light have to do with jet lag? According to Foster’s research, a photoreceptor in the eye that regulates our circadian rhythms, or master body clock, reacts strongly to blue light with a wavelength of 480 nanometers, CNN Travel reported. By targeting that receptor, the light shower resets the “master clock” to overcome the effects of skipping time zones.

Photon bathers are guided through the one-person light show by narration and ambient sound, with flowing blue animations on the LED wall inside the shower, Fast Company reported.

The fluid animations are “particularly impactful because these LED panels are typically used for large on-stage displays, so being right up close to a screen like this is really rare,” Wieden + Kennedy creative Catherine McCurry told Fast Company. “At times, it really feels like it’s raining light.”

Alas, the light shower was designed solely for TED, but maybe Delta will consider installing these futuristic refreshment booths in airports. Perhaps we could even see the photon showers in high-end homes; after all, nothing says “modern convenience” more than, “I partied all night, stumbled home and light-zapped myself into wakefulness.”

Below is a picture of Delta’s creation, courtesy of Fast Company. Come into the light:

photon fast company