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Obscura, a professionnal tool for real-time atmospheres simulation

Prize(s) Winners in Innovative Lighting Software Applications
Company L'Observatoire De La Nuit
Lead Designers Nicolas Houel
Other Designer's names Maxime Poirier, Alexis Yon, Maël Angot
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Entry Description

Obscura is a digital tool for decision support in the field of artificial lighting developed as an extension of a PhD thesis about nocturnal urbanism completed in 2021.

Obscura It is an immersive interface that simulates artificial lighting environments in real time, based on real geographical, environmental, and material data. It allows to reconstitute specific geographical, urban, and interior environments and to simulate, analyze and improve artificial lighting practices.

Obscura tries to answer to a simple question: in view of the changes in practices linked to energy, environmental and social issues, how can we design, share, and decide on tomorrow’s lighting ambiences? It addresses the fundamental characteristic that links human beings, light and night: perception. It is entirely dedicated to the qualification of artificial lighting and offers a unique representation of how luminous ambiences can affect space.

It is a unique interface for demonstrating and promoting innovations developed by manufacturers, who can, in real time, present the lighting ambiences accessible thanks to their solutions, directly applied to monuments, public spaces, landscapes and interior designs that are the subject of a lighting study.
Sustainability Approach

Obscura is dedicated to the democratization of moderate and high-quality lighting, to the search for an opening to the restitution of natural night atmospheres and the benefits of darkness for all living beings. It accompanies the evolution of practices towards a reasoned and adapted integration of digital tools and encourages the rise in requirements of lighting projects through interactive and collaborative simulations.

The interface, with its unique ergonomics, allows to simulate, calculate, and realize quality night-time atmospheres, where the use of lighting is primarily designed to protect the natural environment.

Obscura offers unrivaled speed and reliability of execution, radically optimizing design times and leaving time for what really matters: the quality of the lighting project.
Company Description

L'Observatoire de la nuit explores the subject of nocturnal experience. The team's skills (architecture, digital development, research, sociology) enable the constant renewal of urban, architectural and landscape nocturnal development projects.
For each study, L'Observatoire puts the political, technical, cultural, historical and societal context at the forefront. The cross-disciplinary data mobilized enables L'Observatoire to determine ambiances options, always in line with the contemporary challenges of artificial lighting.