Stats for this track
More tracks by UCL Sound
This 2012 audio recording is the first time this glass tube has been recorded in use. The tube, created c1895–1900, is believed to be the first prototype for the neon sign in which a gas conducts an electric current and emits light. In this recording, Professor Alwyn Davies in the UCL Chemistry Department is lighting the tub with a Tesla coil, a type of transformer designed to provide a high voltage at high frequency and low current.
This tube was created by Norman Collie, a chemist and skilled glassblower, who demonstrated his discharge tubes at the Royal Society in 1909. Although he created the tube, Collie had no interest in its commercial applications. It was left to the Frenchman Georges Claude to exploit their potential and create neon signs as we know them today.
This track is published under Creative Commons Attribution, so you may download, use and remix, but you must cite UCL as the source.
This track is part of our Sounds of UCL, a series of audio recordings from around the university created by our staff and students. For more sounds, check out the full set here:
Sounds of UCL by UCL Sound