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Fluorescent lighting, headaches and eye-strain.
Wilkins, A.J., Nimmo-Smith, I., Slater, A.I. & Bedocs, L.
In Proceedings of the National Lighting Conference and Daylighting Colloquium (pp.188-196), (Robinson College, Cambridge). CIBSE.
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The weekly incidence of headaches amongst office workers was compared when the offices were lit by fluorescent lighting where the fluorescent tubes were controlled by (1) a conventional choke circuit with switch start giving illumination that fluctuated with a peak-peak modulation of 40-50% and a principal frequency component at 100Hz; (2) a choke circuit with electronic start giving illumination with similar characteristics; (3) a solid state high-frequency ballast giving illumination with 100Hz modulation less than 7%. In a double-blind cross-over design, the average incidence of headaches and eye-strain was more than halved under high-frequency lighting. The speed with which the tubes ignited had no influence. Headaches tended to decrease with the height of the office above the ground and thus with increasing natural light. Office occupants chose to switch on the high-frequency lighting for longer.