The Fluorescent Phenomenon
One evening while changing a fluorescent bulb in my apartment, I
discovered another interesting effect of static electricity.
The air in my apartment was dry, and the electrical charges were
building up frequently, causing long (1" to 0.5") sparks to jump from my
fingers to anything grounded. As I carried a new 16" fluorescent tube
across the carpeted floor to fix the closet light, the
tube flickered in my hands. Furthermore, when I touched the contacts on
the end of the tube to something grounded, the tube illuminated brightly
for a split second.
You can try this at home with any fluorescent bulb. fluorescent bulbs are fragile and can break easily, so be careful.
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