The lifetimes of the photoluminescent compounds contained in the coating of fluorescent compact lamps are usually measured using specialised instruments, including pulsed lasers and/or spectrofluorometers. Here we discuss how some low cost apparatuses, based on the use of either sensors for the educational lab or commercial digital photo cameras, can be employed to the same aim. The experiments do not require that luminescent phosphors are hazardously extracted from the compact fluorescent lamp, that also contains mercury. We obtain lifetime measurements for specific fluorescent elements of the bulb coating, in good agreement with the known values. We also address the physical mechanisms on which fluorescence lamps are based in a simplified way, suitable for undergraduate students; and we discuss in detail the physics of the lamp switch-off by analysing the time dependent spectrum, measured through a commercial fiber-optic spectrometer. Since the experiment is not hazardous in any way, requires a simple setup up with instruments which are commonly found in educational labs, and focuses on the typical features of the exponential decay, it is suitable for being performed in the undergraduate laboratory.
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|Titolo:||The photoluminescence of a fluorescent lamp: didactic experiments on the exponential decay|
|Autori:||Onorato, Pasquale; Gratton, Luigi; Malgieri, Massimiliano; Oss, Stefano|
|Titolo del periodico:||PHYSICS EDUCATION|
|Anno di pubblicazione:||2017|
|Numero e parte del fascicolo:||1|
|Codice identificativo Scopus:||2-s2.0-85006507504|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.1088/1361-6552/52/1/015011|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||03.1 Articolo su rivista (Journal article)|
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