Neon Lamp

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Neon lamp

Consists of a glass tube from which the air is extracted and neon gas added. The tube glows when current flows through it.
Illustrated Dictionary of Architecture Copyright © 2012, 2002, 1998 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. All rights reserved
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Neon Lamp


a low-pressure gas-discharge light source in which visible radiation is produced by a discharge in a neon atmosphere. The best-known neon lamps are the glow-discharge signal lamps, in which the orange-red luminescence of the discharge regions adjacent to the cathode is used. The lamps are filled with a mixture of neon and helium. To decrease the discharge voltage, a small quantity of argon is introduced into the gas mixture, and the surface of the cathode may be coated with a thin layer of an activating substance. The lamps operate on alternating or direct current. Their power is 0.01 to 10 watts (W), their light flux is 0.02 to 5 lumens (lm), and their current ranges from fractions of a milliampere (mA) to 20–30 mA. In cold-cathode neon lamps used in advertising (fluorescent lamps), the glow of the positive column of the glow discharge is used.

Neon arc lamps with a heater cathode are used as airport beacons; their power is of the order of 500 W, and their luminous efficiency is up to 10 lm/W. They operate reliably at ambient temperatures from —40° to 40°C. The luminous efficiency of mercuryless, fluorescent neon arc lights (about 25 lm/W) exceeds that of red-fluorescent mercury lamps by a factor of 3 and is determined by the visible radiation of the positive discharge column and the fluorescence of a phosphor layer (such as Y2O3 or activated europium) deposited on the walls of the tube. The lighting and electrical parameters of fluorescent neon lamps, in contrast to those of fluorescent mercury lamps, do not depend on the ambient temperature.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.

neon lamp

1. A cold-cathode lamp whose principal light radiation is due to passage of an electric current through neon gas.
2. Any cold-cathode glass-tubing lamp, such as that used for electric signs, regardless of the type of gas that fills the lamp or the presence of phosphors or filters to control color.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Architecture and Construction. Copyright © 2003 by McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
References in periodicals archive ?
They thereby consist of a filling of different noble gases than a neon lamp. A light bulb also typically contains a spiral filament that joins both electrodes inside the bulb, which becomes heated and glows under the passage of the current following connection to an electricity source.
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In the beginning electric lamp factories in the country produced only bulbs and neon lamps (TL).
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Barretts say "Life span is almost infinite, though batteries (easily and cheaply obtainable) may need replacement, perhaps once a year depending on use, and the internal neon lamps can sometimes fail, again, a five minute job for anyone to replace.
When I queried the repair and maintenance aspect, I was told "Life span is almost infinite, though batteries (easily and cheaply obtainable) may need replacement, perhaps once a year depending on use, and the internal neon lamps can sometimes fail, again, a five minute job for anyone to replace.
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