Airswitch Beaker Lamp - How does it work?

Can somebody explain to me how this "Airswitch Beaker Lamp" works? Specifically, how does the switching On/Off and the dimming function with just your hand waving over the top?

Description from site:
"Straight from the laboratory to your living room, the Airswitch beaker lamp makes the light switch obsolete. Simple movements of your hand across the top opening of the fixture turn the light on or off and dim the intensity..."

Additional comment on site:
"You raise or lower your hand above it to adjust brightness and wave your hand over to turn on and off."

http://www.uncommongoods.com/item/item.jsp?source=family&itemId=14254

scafool9 years ago
It is obviously some form of proximity switch, and it seems most likely to be a capacitance based version. That would mean it has a radio frequency generator using a metal plate or antenna as a capacitor and as your hand moves into the area the capacitance on the plate changes which places the circuit out of phase and changes the voltages. This can be used as a signal. That is now a Theremin works. But I am just guessing because I am not familiar with this lamp and which proximity switch it is using. Merry Christmas, goodnight.
NachoMahma9 years ago
. All I could find is that it uses an IR beam. (http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/chicago/lighting/airswitch-lamps-from-mathmos-036645)