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Author Topic: The eternal lightbulb
fafh
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Ive heard that a lightbulb that can last forever has been invented, but the patent was bought by the biggest lightbulb manufacturers (duh!). Pretty damn good invention if its true, you know, one less thing to worry about.
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D. Dodge Silver
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Elementary Lightbulb Operation Principles:

A standard filiment lightbulb provides light when current is passed through a tungsten filiment causing this filiment to burn and provide light. Becuase the filiment is enclosed in a vacuum inside a glass sphere, the filiment does not burn away as fast, but it will eventually burn away.

In order to have an everlasting lightbulb, the technology behind the standard lightbulb would have to be completely revamped. Hell, all light producing technology, including lasers, fiber optics transmission and many other things would benefit from the technology behind an everlasting lightbulb. So, it would be ridiculous to suppress such an amazing invention.

D. Dodge "Shedding some light on the subject" Silver

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A Midway Summer Night's Dream
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
Originally posted by fafh:
Ive heard that a lightbulb that can last forever has been invented...

Well, this one has lasted over 100 years!

Midway "if the darn perverts weren't always stickin em..." Bill

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vintage hippie priestess attitude
The Red and the Green Stamps


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I don't know about forever, but how about for a pretty frickin' long time (100 plus years and counting), seen on their live webcam in a California firehouse.

Kemi "bright idea" B.

[edited to add: Dammit, Midway beat me to it!]

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snarkbait
The Red and the Green Stamps


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There's a lightbulb in a firehouse in Livermore, CA that has been continuously lit for 100 years. Check out the story on this website

Snark "Keep your lamp trimmed and burning" Bait

[edit] Haha! 3 posts at the same time about the same thing!

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D. Dodge Silver
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Boy, you guys sure are up to date on the latest headlines in "ancient technology that still works."

Anyway, it is possible for an exceptionally well designed bulb to last for quite some time, as the initial application of voltage to the filiment is often what burns out the bulb. A continous application would cause significantly less wear on the filiment. Exactly how long a continually lit bulb could last is an interesting academic question, and one that might be answered by this Californian bulb. Someone should definately study the engineering in this bulb when it finally goes out.

D. Dodge "The Detroit Edison White Light Co." Silver

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Blue
The Red and the Green Stamps


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If it were true, you probably wouldn't want to pay $3000.00 for a light bulb, anyway.

"Here, son. Here's your family legacy, Grandpa's lightbulb."

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Astra
The "Was on Sale" Song


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The Urban Legends show on TLC just mentioned this bulb as a trivia question before a commercial break.

--------------------
This has been yet another... USELESS POST.

Posts: 6105 | From: Mississippi | Registered: Sep 2001  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
dilbert
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
Originally posted by D. Dodge Silver:
So, it would be ridiculous to suppress such an amazing invention.

It would be ridiculous to suppress such an invention from anyone that could afford a million dollar light bulb. However, any light bulb manufacturer that sold these would go out of business if they sold them to the consumer. Almost every business relys on the fact that things wear out and people need to replace them.
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Frankd6
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
A standard filiment lightbulb provides light when current is passed through a tungsten filiment causing this filiment to burn and provide light. Becuase the filiment is enclosed in a vacuum inside a glass sphere,
I'm confused. [Confused]
I didn't think things could burn in a vacuum. I thought burning was oxidation, which would require oxygen. [Furious] Vacuum = no oxygen.

Frank
I got a rock.

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abbubmah
Ding Dong! Merrily on High Definition TV


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quote:
Originally posted by Frankd6:
quote:
A standard filiment lightbulb provides light when current is passed through a tungsten filiment causing this filiment to burn and provide light. Becuase the filiment is enclosed in a vacuum inside a glass sphere,
I'm confused. [Confused]
I didn't think things could burn in a vacuum. I thought burning was oxidation, which would require oxygen. [Furious] Vacuum = no oxygen.

Give Frank a gold star! You are absolutely correct. The filament is in vacuum, and acts as a resistance to the line voltage. The filament glows white-hot. Reasons for it "burning out" are two:

1. continuous flexing from cold state to hot state and back weakens the element.

2. bulb loses vacuum over time, and element indeed "burns out".

A perfect bulb could be made, if there were a way to prevent the thermal effects from degrading the element. Of course, the standard lightbulb actually produces light as a secondary product. The first is heat.

A perfect lightbulb would produce equivalent wattage with no heat. I have recently seen LED replacements for tractor-trailer rigs; bright enough for DOT standards. Someday soon, perhaps.

ham "welcome Frank!" bubba

--------------------
Fundamentally Unfundie since 1975

Posts: 7942 | From: Louisiana | Registered: Jun 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
SylverOne
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Just how exactly can it be proved that this light bulb would/could last forever? And how long would they have to test this bulb to be able to stamp lasts forever on it? How do you substantiate 'forever?' Can you? Can the manufacturer present me with one bulb that has lasted 'forever' to prove their claim. [Wink]

Sylver"truth in advertising'One

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dewey
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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quote:
Originally posted by SylverOne:
Just how exactly can it be proved that this light bulb would/could last forever? And how long would they have to test this bulb to be able to stamp lasts forever on it? How do you substantiate 'forever?' Can you? Can the manufacturer present me with one bulb that has lasted 'forever' to prove their claim. [Wink]

Sylver"truth in advertising'One

I'm not sure what your point is, SylverOne.

I don't believe that anyone here has claimed that a lightbulb has been invented that lasts forever. They have only pointed out a specific lightbulb that has continued to work for a century. That is quite different.

For a company to make that claim they would have to be confident that they have eliminated all the factors that cause failure in a lightbulb, such as heat production. As far as I can tell no one has done that. They could then claim that it lasts forever and offer a money back guarantee. Anything else would be meaningless.

dewey

Posts: 2413 | From: Massachusetts | Registered: Oct 2000  |  IP: Logged | Report this post to a moderator
   

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