Episode 96 - Building The Light Pollution Matrix

If light is in a simulation, how does it know what is reality? Okay, obviously light isn’t self-aware. But Dr. Morrell and his team at University of Exeter in the U.K. are creating computational models that predict the characteristics of artificial light at night. These models can show everything from how street lights will affect animals, plants, and humans. It’ll show what the glare will be like on a particular road. But most importantly, it can demonstrate how to improve the lighting before spending one pound or dollar on a light fixture. Dr. Morrell is a postdoc researcher working between the Environment and Sustainability Institute and the Astrophysics group at the University of Exeter. He received his PhD in astrophysics from Exeter in 2020, where he researched techniques for measuring the properties of stars. Since then, he has been working on combining measurement techniques with computational models to predict the characteristics of artificial light at night at and just above ground level, in locations and at scales that humans and animals experience it. He is working to develop quantitative models to better predict the ecological impacts of our rapidly evolving urban lightscapes.

Connect with Dr. Morrell:

Dr. Morrell on Twitter
Mastodon – @smorrell@mastodon.social
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sammorrell/
Personal website: https://sammorrell.co.uk/
Project website: https://www.exeter.ac.uk/research/esi/research/projects/artificial-light/