Lighting Technology

Lighting technology is used primarily in theatre, opera and other performing arts to control stage lighting, promote a sense of atmosphere and provide special effects. The right lighting gives a feeling of time and place - sunlight, moonlight, firelight and lamplight effects can be simulated, with soft and diffused to focused and bright illumination that adds to visual cues from decoration and props. Such is the complexity of lighting technology and its implementation that professional stage technicians will be required to operate it for performances.

Special lights can project images, shapes or patterns through gobos, a type of stencil or template that is slotted inside. Suppliers of lighting equipment can be found at As well as theatrical effects, company logos and advertising messages can be projected at special events, exhibitions and trade fairs. Larger dance venues also employ lighting technology to create the right mood and emotional effect; dancing has a special and dramatic interaction with light - from moving heads and spiralling patterns to laser technology and spotlights on smoke.

Light control desks use MIDI technology and lighting networks, with technicians often working alongside sound engineers at corporate events, larger conferences and concerts. Lighting cables and electrical connectors are especially useful in mobile installations while ceiling rail systems allow movement of spotlights, for which tungsten halogen or quartz halogen lamp bulbs are preferred. LED based luminaries are increasing in popularity although fluorescent lamps are not normally used for stage work; they do not normally dim well, except with specialised and costly ballast units. For those seeking high-power lighting manufacturers and lamp distributors along with the latest lighting technology news, listings are the place to look.

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