Luminescence has not always been properly defined in previous literature, as has been pointed out in a recent book by Adirovich 1. The definition given by Wiedemann 2 and adopted by the author previously3 states that luminescence is a general term for the emission of light from a substance during or following the absorption of energy such as that of ultra violet radiation or high energy particles. However, luminescence must be distinguished from thermal radiation since it does not follow Kirchhoff’s law. The energy density of luminescence emission per unit wavelength interval is always larger than that which would result from thermal radiation at the particular temperature of the luminescent material. It is fairly easy to distinguish luminescence from neighbouring physical processes, such as the Raman and Compton effects, because of the time delay in the luminescence emission after excitation which is greater than 10−3 sec. The Raman and Compton effects are completed in a time of about 10−14 sec or less.


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General bibliography on luminescence and related phenomena

  1. The state of the subject and its associated fields up to the year 1931 is best indicated by articles inWIEN and HARMS’ Handbuch der Experimentalphysik by P. Lenard, F. Schmidt and R. Tomaschek: vol. 23 (Parts I and II), 1929.Google Scholar
  2. Pringshrim, P.: Fluorescence and Phosphorescence. New York 1950. — This extensive text includes a treatment of the luminescence of solids, liquids and gases as known up to the year 1947. The section on solids is of importance for its encyclopedic discussion of the various classes of phosphors and copious references are given to researches dating from the beginning of the century.Google Scholar
  3. Leverenz, H. W.: Introduction on the Luminescence of Solids. New York 1950. — The text is mainly concerned with inorganic phosphors of commercial interest, dealing with their preparation, structure and chief characteristics. A large number of references and a chemical index for phosphors are included.Google Scholar
  4. Kröger, F. A.: Some aspects of the Luminescence of Solids. Amsterdam 1947. — A concise monograph treating of the physical characteristics of inorganic phosphors and their interpretation. An extensive bibliography is included.Google Scholar
  5. Garlick, G. F. J.: Luminescent Materials. Oxford 1949. — A research monograph concerned mainly with the fundamental processes of luminescence in inorganic and organic solids.Google Scholar
  6. Adirovich, E. I.: Some problems in the theory of the luminescence of crystals. Berlin 1954. — A Russian contribution to discussion of the basic problems of luminescence. The text is somewhat out of touch with Western developments but provides provocative and stimulating reading.Google Scholar
  7. Förster, Tx.: The fluorescence of organic compounds. Göttingen 1951. — A comprehensive text of luminescence in organic molecules and its theory. An important contribution to theories of luminescence in relation to molecular structure. Extensive references are provided.Google Scholar
  8. Fonda, G. R. and F. Seitz (Editors): Solid Luminescent Materials: New York 1948. — Contains the text of papers presented at a Symposium in Cornell University, U.S.A. in late 1946. Contains aspects such as physical chemistry of phosphors, phosphorescence, thermoluminescence and stimulation.Google Scholar
  9. Lang, H. R. (Editor): Luminescence. London 1955. — Comprises papers and discussions of the Cambridge Symposium ( U.K.) held in 1954. It provides an up to date cross section of developments in many aspects of inorganic phosphors and their applications.Google Scholar
  10. Przibram, K. (Vienna): Colouration and Luminescence 1953. — An extensive survey of colour centre phenomena and luminescence in many materials with emphasis on natural minerals. Optical characteristics are discussed exhaustively.Google Scholar
  11. Curie, M. and G. Destriau (Editors): International Colloquium on Luminescence, Paris [J. Phys. Radium 17, No. 8–9, 609–832 (1956)].Google Scholar

Review articles etc

  1. Fonda, G. R.: Reviews of articles on luminescence. — Provides annually in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society of America a review of most of the work published during the year in luminescence. A useful guide to new phosphor systems.Google Scholar
  2. Garlick, G. F. J.: Cathodoluminescence. Adv. Electronics 2, 152 (1950).Google Scholar
  3. Garlick, G. F. J.: Brit. J. Appl. Phys. Suppl. 4, 103 (1955).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Garlick, G. F. J.: Proc. Amer. Inst. Radio Engrs. 1955, 1097.Google Scholar
  5. Garlick, G.F. J.:The electrical properties of phosphors. Progress in Semiconductors,Vol. I. 1956Google Scholar
  6. Curie, M., and D. Curie: Basic problems of crystal luminescence. Cahiers de Phys. 1955, No. 55, 1 —85.Google Scholar
  7. Kröger, F. A.: Inorganic crystal phosphors. Ergebn. exakt. Naturw. 29 (1956)Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1958

Authors and Affiliations

  • G. F. J. Garlick

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