According to BRE’s The essential guide to retail lighting:
A discharge lamp is a ‘Lamp that produces light by discharging an electric current through a gas (neon, argon, krypton) or a gas / metal vapour mixture (mercury, sodium). For some types of discharge lamp, such as fluorescent tubes, the electrical discharge generates ultraviolet radiation, which is converted into visible light by a phosphor coating on the inner face of the glass. The type of coating determines the spectrum of light emitted.’
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