Homes That Glow in the Dark (Feb, 1947)
Homes That Glow in the Dark
Modern lighting adopts fluorescence to achieve harmony of illumination with architectural design and decor Lighting for the modern home can be beautiful as well I as scientifically correct. Fluorescent lighting makes all this possible now; and gone forever are the days when fluorescent fixtures caused kitchen, bathroom, or living room to look like a hospital.
Fluorescent lighting is only 10 years old, but it has emerged today, after intensive wartime development, as the key to a new approach to a long-range problem: how to keep America’s vision up to par.
Fluorescent lamps themselves have taken on new shapes and forms—complete circles and thin, long cylinders instead of the familiar fat tubes—but all provide illumination in the same way. Electric current applied to a mercury vapor inside the tube creates ultraviolet rays. The interior of the tube is coated with phosphors (crystals that give off visible light when exposed to invisible radiation) and the tube glows when the ultraviolet rays strike the phosphors.
Color helps make the home Fluorescent lamps provide greater color control than do filament lamps, a valuable characteristic now that color is fully recognized as an important factor in environment, daytime effects are reproduced with fluorescent lamps; materials retain their true daytime shades under their glow.
New fluorescent fixtures have been designed to harmonize with their surroundings. Whole walls are made luminous. Slender fluorescent tubes behind concealed strips keep lighting elements in scale with design and permit dramatic decorative effects. Floor and table lamps, designed to fit individual furniture groupings, combine circular fluorescent and filament lamps to provide the correct light for reading, or the subdued level that goes With polite conversation.