Adaptation Luminance

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Adaptation Luminance

The average luminance (or brightness) of those objects and surfaces in the immediate vicinity of an observer. Also called

 adaptation brightness, adaptation level, adaptation illuminance.

The adaptation luminance has a marked influence on an observer's estimate of the visual range because, along with the visual angle of the object under observation, it determines the observer's threshold contrast. High adaptation luminance tends to produce a high threshold contrast, thus reducing the estimated visual range. This effect of the adaptation luminance is to be distinguished from the influence of background luminance.


This article is based on NASA's Dictionary of Technical Terms for Aerospace Use