Neon sign is a lighting display composed of an array of intricately shaped glass tubes that have been filled with several kinds of gases depending on its color and luminosity and are predominantly used for commercial decorative purposes. Typically associated with funky storefront signs and rustic town area advertisements, neon lights carry a sense of nostalgic sentiment for the common masses. From the moment neon lights are being introduced in the twentieth century, cities from across the globe have been illuminated with light during the night by these scintillating and almost phantasmagoric lettering of neon signboards. Although LED video screen advertising has become increasingly prevalent nowadays, neon lighting has remained a classic favorite among vendors searching for a distinguished alternative instead to patronize their brand. Strikingly bright with radiant colorful flares, neon lights are undeniably one of the most attractive forms of outdoor advertising and even for indoor decor, drawing attention from its enticing vibes and timeless sensation. For your neon light advertisements, signage or interior decors, consider Aathaworld, an experienced neon light supplier and contractor based in Malaysia for all your neon light needs.
A Brief History of Neon Lights
Starting off with a concise chemistry lesson on neon as an element, Neon sits on the far right of the periodic table, belonging to the family of noble gases. They are found to be the fourth most abundant element in the Milky Way; but are relatively rare on Earth, accounting to approximately 0.0018% of the Earth’s atmosphere. Preceding scientific experiments had demonstrated that almost all gases would conduct an electric current, producing light by the excitation of electrons and its resultant release of photon energy. Without diving into further elaboration, neon is first discovered in 1898 by British scientists Morris W. Travers and William Ramsay along with other rare gas elements, that being argon, krypton and xenon, through the study of fractional distillation of air, such by liquifying atmospheric air and collecting gases that had vaporized at different heating stages. After being isolated, they are put into an “electrical gas-discharge” tube, which is essentially simply an early precursor of today’s neon light tubes, based on neon light supplier in Malaysia. The collected neon gas is then subjected to an electrical current and was immediately identified by a brilliant blaze of crimson-orange light. This scientific breakthrough was however an expensive process to be exploited for substantial purposes.
Fast forward to 1907, a French businessman by the name of Georges Claude had managed to develop an economical method for potential mass production of neon lights in the market. Soon after based on experience of some old timer, neon light supplier Malaysia, these neon lights had found an opportunity in the signage business and had since become an integral part of the architecture of many buildings in the United States and France throughout the 1920s and 1930s. Being a relatively affordable form of publicity, neon lights weren’t exclusive to established brands and big billboards but was available for small businesses in barbershops, restaurants, pubs and bars. During the 1950s, the advent of plastic signs illuminated by fluorescent tubes had begun to take over the popularity of neon signs as neon lights were being stigmatized for undesirable establishments, such as those run-down motels and sleazy bars. Nonetheless, neon light has managed to make a comeback in commercial signage recently in appreciation of its artistic manifestation and vintage appeal. Contact Aathaworld, an experienced neon light supplier and contractor Malaysia to help you in your neon sign design and installations.
A Simple Explanation How Neon Lights Are Made
Strictly speaking, neon gas is only able to produce a bright red-orange colour; it is necessary for a combination of different gases, including helium, xenon, krypton, carbon dioxide, mercury and argon to attribute for specific colours, for instances, carbon dioxide produces white light, whereas helium is responsible for the colour yellow, while argon gas produces a violet to lavender-blue colour. Other than being accounted for the blue hue in neon signs, mercury is also commonly added among the noble gases to intensify the light that is produced when it vaporizes during electrification. In retrospect, it is however possible to create the various colours through the use of a phosphorus coating applied on the inside of the glass tubing. The ultraviolet light produced from the mercury vapor by neon light supplier in Malaysia impinges a variety of light-emitting phosphorescent materials producing lights of various hues. At any rate, the slightest contamination of non-inert gas impurities can drastically affect the desired effects by increasing the breakdown and burning voltage.
The glass-tubing used to encase the gases neon signs is made from soft lead glass, as they have a high reflective index, shields against radiation and has a significantly lower working temperature. They are therefore ideal for bending and forming neon tubes into different shapes and letters. The electrodes at the ends of a single tube are made from pure iron sheathed in a cylindrical glass jacket or envelope with one end open by neon light supplier Malaysia. A typical neon light tube requires as much as 15,000 volts to light up and as a result, they usually come with a transformer that converts the standard 120 volts from utility lines to the necessary high-voltage. Usually, a special wire known as gas tube and oil (GTO) cables, having high insulation for at least 7500 volts, are specially designed to connect individual sections of neon tubes in series and is connected to the transformer through an insulated housing made of borosilicate glass with a spring connection at on end. Neon sign tubing can be supported in several ways with small indoor signs having a steel skeleton framework that is painted black, allowing the sign to seemingly float in space. Large outdoor signs offered by neon light supplier in Malaysia are usually supported by stronger wood, steel or aluminium structures, with the transformer placed inside a cabinet protected by outdoor environments.
Not only is the design process of neon signs are entirely hand-made, but even the mechanical bending and shaping of neon tubes into their desired pattern are done manually by professional craftsmen with years of experience. In most parts of Asia, the design of a neon sign starts with choosing from a pool of calligraphers, each having their own distinctive style, with some specializing in simplistic scripts, or a more visceral style and or the company logo as per the client’s request. Factors and limitations such as the diameter and minimum radius of the tubing that can be bent, the confines of the available space and the overall length of the tubing that the transformer is able to power, has to be taken into consideration in the final design. The smaller the diameter of the tubing, the brighter the light the neon tube emits; According to neon light supplier Malaysia, on the flip side this requires more power, limiting the over-all length of tubing the transformer can handle.
The manufacturing of neon signs are generally similar and begins with coating a fixed length of glass tubing with liquid phosphor suspensions or colour tints that are dried in an oven. The prepared outline of the sign is laid out on a sheet of asbestos as a template to be replicated into the final design of the neon sign. The glass tubing is carefully heated and softened using van assortment of burners, such as gas-ribbon burners for making sweeping curves in round letters and small hand torches to heat shorter lengths. After it the letter or design is formed, an electrode is then heated and fused onto each end in the factory of neon light supplier in Malaysia. A sm