Designing with transparent lighting

A Do-It-Yourself approach, 2016


Electroluminescent material is a light emitting electrically powered composite, which consists of a stacked sequence of various specific materials. There is a knowledge gap between the theory and the practical DIY fabrication of electroluminescents (ELs). I this project I will demonstrate practical knowledge on the DIY production of electroluminescent materials and the fabrication parameters.  

The project started by analyzing the internal working principles of the luminous material (phosphors) and the material properties of the composite and sensory properties of the emitted light. In order to explore the context of the material, I investigated the current context of use and I compared the ELs with other light emitting materials. Simultaneously I tinkered with the material to gain insights for development opportunities. I used the variations of EL samples made during tinkering to map the experiential qualities; this helped me to create the experience vision of the final application. I converted the insights gained through the tinkering into summary diagrams like a problem solving flowchart for future DIY EL fabrication projects. The analysis was the essential foundation for the ideation phase which lead to the development of a product concept, an umbrella, “Regenlicht - a Drop of Light”, to demonstrate the unique qualities of the material. The umbrella analogously lights up parts of the canvas that are hit by raindrops. This spectacular sight transforms a possible negative experience of a rainy day into a playful experience with the dance of light drops.