Black lights are used for decorative effects, in medicine for diagnostic and healing purposes, for the detection of counterfeit money, for curing resins, and also for detecting fluorescent minerals in rock and fluorescence in blood for crime scenes. Black lights often need special fixtures. A Wood’s lamp is used in science and in forensics.
Black light fluorescent tubes are similar to regular tubes, except that they have a dark blue-purple coating. They are available in a variety of sizes and watts, including the F15T8/BLB which is used in standard fluorescent tube fixtures. If you want to spice up your home for Halloween this October, a few black light tubes will due the trick.
Black light tubes are also used for tanning beds. The ultraviolet light is thought not to damage eyes and skin, although overuse can do both.
Another type of UV fluorescent bulb emits ultraviolet light to attract insects, which are then electrocuted by the device. These bulbs emit visible light along with ultraviolet light, so they do not have a purple filter. They appear bluish-purple to the naked eye because the less visible mercury emission spectrum is block by plain glass. These bulbs are designed as “BL” and are not suitable as a replacement for BLB tubes in BLB-designed fixtures.
The first black light was created in 1904 using Wood’s glass as the container for an incandescent bulb. These are the black lights you often find at party stores. They are very inefficient, burn hot, and have a short life. Mercury vapor black lights also use Wood’s glass, but have very high power ratings up to 1000 watts and are used for theatrical displays and concerts. Both types of Wood’s glass lights are primarily decorative.
A Wood’s lamp is used in dermatology to identify some skin diseases. It was first used in 1925 in dermatology to identify fungal infections, and is still used today to detect fungal and bacterial infections and to diagnose tuberculosis, vitiligo, ethylene glycol poisoning, and erythrasma.
Black light is also used to authenticate bank notes, oil painting and antiques. When you go to a club, you will often be stamped with fluorescent ink, which will identify you as a paying guest under a small Wood’s lamp.
Now that we have shed some light on the subject of black lights, call us to order your decorative lights and bug zapper lights