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How do flourescant lights work/run out?

  1. Mar 20, 2005 #1
    I was wondering how flourescant lights work, and how they eventually wear out.

    I'm not sure, but it seems that you just have halogen gas inside the glass tube, you pump some electricity into the gas, it excites the atoms and they give off light as their electrons go from higher energy levels back down to lower ones.

    If I'm wrong on that, then please correct me, but it seems simple enough...

    The real question I have, is how do they wear out? If all it is is atoms getting excited and giving off light, how does the light bulb eventually "die out"?
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 20, 2005 #2


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  4. Mar 25, 2005 #3
    i do believe that that is how they work, don't quote me on it, because when i know i'm right, i'm wrong

  5. Mar 25, 2005 #4
    One way they quit is when the filaments in the ends burn out.
  6. Mar 29, 2005 #5
    Ahh; I hadn't thought that there were traditional filaments inside halogen lightbulbs that actually provided the energy to produce light, I thought it would've been more like 2 active electrodes just exciting the atoms directly...
  7. Mar 30, 2005 #6
    Halogen bulbs have filaments, but fluorescent bulbs do not.
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