4 Great Uses for Black Light Bulbs

December 29, 2014 by Sarah Longfellow

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black light bulbsThough the heyday of black light bulbs for psychedelic atmosphere mood lighting has pretty much come and gone, the practical uses of black light bulbs remain as strong and relevant as ever. Utilizing the science of light refraction and reactive molecules, black light technology still helps us in our everyday lives. Whether at the club or in a forensic laboratory, black light bulbs stand the test of time because they get the job done.  Here are four ways black light technology helps us the most.
Machine repair
Miniscule leaks can be nearly undetectable to the naked eye, but repairmen have been using black lights to locate even the tiniest of gaps. Phosphor-infused liquid is injected as small quantity into fuel and refrigerant lines to allow the mechanic to shine a light on the problem. The phosphorescent glow is a tell-tale sign where a leak is located and where the repair job needs to begin.
Forgery detection
Thanks to the addition of phosphors in modern paint production, and antique appraiser can confirm the relative age of an item, and whether or not it’s as old as the owner claims. Using black lights, the appraiser can bather the object to determine if it reacts. If it does, it’s a modern piece, as phosphors are a modern addition to paints. If it doesn’t glow, it might well be the real deal.black light bulbs
Counterfeit currency
With the world economy taking left and right, it’s no wonder counterfeiters are ramping up their game. However, there is one thing they simply can’t reproduce, and that’s the phosphor induced strip found in US currency bills. When shown under a black light, the strip glows. If it doesn’t, it’s time for a local business to call the police.
Crowd management
Whether it’s an amusement park or a dance club, paying patrons often receive and invisible hand stamp to show they have paid, and whether they are of the legal drinking age. The stamp washes off easily, but resists sweat and contact, making a great tool for businesses to check up on. The patron’s hand is simply doused with black light, and the stamp shows up every time.
As a proven tool for many utilizations, black light bulbs are here to stay as a helpful way to identify and support (or debunk) what things purport to be. The black light posters are still cool, but the technology has surpassed the frivolous and set up shop in the realm of the practical.

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