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Television and Video

What are plasma TVs made of?


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November 18, 2010 1:38AM

Plasma displays are made of thousands of tiny cells, three for each pixel that makes up the image. Three are used to mix red, green and blue light together to create the color required.

Inside each cell is a low pressure gas. When the gas has a voltage applied across it, it changes state from a gas to a plasma. Plasma is known as the fourth state of matter (the other three being solids, liquids and gases). Plasma can also be formed at extremely high temperatures such as in the sun. A plasma in a television is at a much lower temperature.

When electrical energy is passed into the cell, the plasma releases photons of ultra-violet light. The UV light strikes the front of the cell which has a phosphor coating. The phosphor then glows red, green or blue depending on the composition of the phosphor coating and so produces the colored light that we see as an image.