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Naomi Miller

Naomi Miller

Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
Portland Office
Portland, OR 97204
(503) 417-7571


Naomi Miller has enjoyed 13 years at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory in Portland OR as a designer/scientist in the advanced lighting team. Working to bridge the gap between technology and application, she is promoting the wise use of LEDs, and working with industry to overcome the hurdles facing this technology and its control. Some people call her The Flicker Queen, some with humor, some without.

Recent work includes publishing an extensive literature review on temporal light modulation (TLM, aka "flicker") in Lighting Research & Technology. She and PNNL colleagues conducted a human subjects study on the visibility of two forms of flicker: the stroboscopic and the phantom array effects. That study showed clear response differences between the two, and was able to identify TLM-sensitive subjects who are more likely to experience headaches, migraines, nausea, or other negative responses from TLM. The results have been submitted to a journal for review, and it is hoped will lead to a metric that will help identify and mitigate problematic TLM.

Current work focuses on discomfort glare, examining human responses to glare sources in different areas of the visual field, and the effect of spectral power distribution on discomfort. Another interest is whether spatial frequency of LED arrays contributes to discomfort glare. In addition, she is an active member of CIE and IES committees developing recommendations on outdoor glare, flicker, and light's effect on human health.

Her background is in lighting design, applications engineering, and encouraging the use of energy-effective lighting. Over 30 architectural lighting design awards hang on her wall, for projects ranging from churches to university science buildings, boutique hotels, supermarkets, and even simple parking lots. She chaired the Illuminating Engineering Society's (IES) Quality of the Visual Environment committee for 8 years and was a principal member of the writing team for the IES's Light + Design: A Guide to Designing Quality Lighting for People and Buildings. She is both a Fellow of the IES and the IALD and served on the Illuminating Engineering Society's Board of Directors for 4 years.

Research Interests

  • Lighting quality
  • The aging eye
  • Health effects of light and dark
  • Glare and flicker issues
  • Dark skies
  • Sustainability and energy efficiency

Education and Credentials

  • BS in Art and Design (Architecture), Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1978
  • MS in Lighting, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2000

PNNL Publications


  • Miller N.J., and L.C. Irvin. 2024. "What the Flicker is going on here? Temporal Light Modulation in Automotive Lighting." In SAE World Congress Exhibition (WCX 2024), April 16-18, 2024, Detroit, MI, Technical Paper No. 2024-01-2462. Warrendale, Pennsylvania:SAE International. PNNL-SA-192198. doi:10.4271/2024-01-2462


  • Miller N.J., G. Campiglia, C. Feustel, J. Dubose, and C. Zimring. 2023. Emory University Cognitive Empowerment Program. PNNL-33859. Richland, WA: Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. Emory University Cognitive Empowerment Program


  • Abboushi B.K., and N.J. Miller. 2022. "What to Measure and Report in Studies of Discomfort Glare from Pedestrian-Scale Luminaires?." Lighting Research & Technology. PNNL-SA-161982. doi:10.1177/14771535221087133
  • Hickcox K.S., S. Fotios, B.K. Abboushi, and N.J. Miller. 2022. "Correspondence: A new two-step approach for evaluating discomfort from glare." Lighting Research & Technology 54, no. 1:91-92. PNNL-SA-167574. doi:10.1177/14771535211071133


  • Kyba C., A. Ruby, H.U. Kuechly, B.R. Kinzey, N.J. Miller, J. Sanders, and J. Barentin, et al. 2021. "Direct measurement of the contribution of street lighting to satellite observations of nighttime light emissions from urban areas." Lighting Research & Technology 53, no. 3:189-211. PNNL-SA-146904. doi:10.1177/1477153520958463


  • Baier R., E. McCreedy, N.J. Miller, E.N. Waggoner, S. Stringer, D.R. Gifford, and R. Uth, et al. 2020. "Impact of Tuned Lighting on Skilled Nursing Center Residents' Sleep." Senior Housing & Care Journal 28, no. 1:3-9. PNNL-SA-154726.


  • Miller N.J., and F.A. Leon. 2019. "Fighting Flicker." LD+A Magazine 49, no. 2:16-20. PNNL-SA-140257.


  • Miller N.J., and B.R. Kinzey. 2018. "Home Nighttime Light Exposures: How much are we really getting?." LD+A Magazine. PNNL-SA-131837.





  • Lehman B., A. Wilkins, S. Berman, M.E. Poplawski, and N.J. Miller. 2011. "Proposing Measures of Flicker in the Low Frequencies for Lighting Applications." LEUKOS - The Journal of the Illuminating Engineering Society of North America 7, no. 3:189-195. PNNL-SA-77242.
  • Poplawski M.E., and N.J. Miller. 2011. "Exploring Flicker in Solid State Lighting: What you Might Find, and How to Deal With It." In Illuminating Engineering Society of North America Annual Conference, October 31-November 1, 2011, Austin, Texas, 52-56. New York, New York:Illuminating Engineering Society of North America (IES). PNNL-SA-83201.

Energy and Environment

Core Research Areas