Green light


From big to small – the world has to think greener, and that includes interior design. One of the hot topics at the Milan Furniture Fair was the cordless LED lamp Candela, which generates its own electricity from bioethanol, which also makes it an excellent charger for your mobile phone!

 "Candela is a fantastic example of how you can use old technology to create something entirely new," says Alessandro Sarfatti, former CEO of the long-established lighting company Luceplan, but who has now taken a step further and founded Astep, an innovative lamp company with roots in Denmark and Italy.

Candela, which is Astep's first product, is a combination of modern LED technology and an oil lamp, but without the annoying smoke. You fill it with bioethanol and then light the wick, which is made of fire-resistant ceramic fibres, in the usual way with a match. But Candela illuminates so much better than a traditional oil lamp. The heat generated by the flame forms an air current which is captured by a generator and converted to electricity which lights up the LED diode. Excess energy is stored in a battery and can be used for charging exhausted mobile phones. Perfect for glorious, long summer evenings outdoors. But also a clear example of one of the strongest trends on show at the Milan Furniture Fair: how furniture and interior design are being endowed with innovative technology. This is a development we have so far only seen the beginning of.