What is Infrared Light?

Isaac Newton discovered that sunlight is composed of a rainbow of colours. We can see some of these colours, but others the human eye cannot distinguish. Infrared is the band of light we perceive as heat. We cannot see this band of light with the naked eye, but we can feel this type of light in the form of heat.

Our sun produces most of its energy output in the infrared segment of the spectrum. Infrared rays heat your body without having to heat the air in-between, through a process called conversion. The best way to describe the sun’s infrared heat is by imagining you are walking outside on a partly cloudy day of about 20 degrees Celsius. You would feel quite comfortable until the sun was suddenly obscured by a cloud. Although the air temperature did not have a chance to drop in those few seconds, you feel chilled, as the cloud blocks part of the warming infrared rays.

Not all infrared light is the same. NASA discovered that infrared rays with a wavelength between 4-16 microns had the same rhythm as the water in our cells.

The Sun's Light Spectrum

Because infrared is part of the sunlight, it’s completely safe to use. Health professionals have used red infrared heat lamps for decades to treat muscle and joint problems. In hospital baby care units, incubators are often equipped with infrared heating systems to keep newborn babies warm. When applied in an infrared sauna, the infrared light that is most effective and safe is the far infrared light. And more specific, the far infrared rays with a wavelength between 4-16 microns.

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