Delta teases us with 'shower' that beats jet lag
Offering hope for jet lag sufferers around the world, Delta airline put its funky new photon light shower on display at the 2013 TED conference in Long Beach, California, this week.
The shower is a concept product created by Delta specifically for TED, allowing conference guests to hop in for a light shower and wash away their jet lag after punching in a few details about their travels.
"Research by Oxford neuroscience professor Russell Foster shows that bathing in light can alter natural circadian rhythms to help people recover from jet lag," according to Delta's signage. "The photon shower by Delta puts this research into practice."
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The shower is based on research that found circadian desynchronosis -- aka jet lag -- occurs after the body rapidly shifts through multiple time zones.
"Our brains contain a master clock that coordinates the circadian rhythms of our body’s many systems," according to Delta. "The symptoms of jet lag occur because the body gets off schedule, not only because of the day/night pattern of its new location, but with itself. This is where light comes into play."
Foster and his team reportedly discovered a photoreceptor in the eye that senses light, but isn’t used for vision.
Called a "photosensitive retinal ganglion cell," it responds strongly to blue light with a wavelength of 480 nanometers and is responsible for regulating our master clock.
"By targeting this receptor, we can reset our master clock faster," says Delta of the research. "The faster our internal clock is reset, the faster we recover from jetlag."
Sadly, the chamber isn't going into airports any time soon -- it was designed purely for exhibition at TED.
Given the interest in the concept chamber, it's likely only a matter of time before we're all bathing in photon lights post-flight.
Is Delta onto something? Would you pay to take a light shower to beat your jet lag? Share your thoughts in the comments box below.