GE American Fluorescent PowerGroove F96PG17-CW

The development of high power fluorescent tubes has resulted in several designs peculiar to the American market. The first such lamp was the 5-foot T17 of 1939. Then in 1954 GE developed 'HO' High Output lamps - starting with the 8-foot 100W which marked the first use of the recessed-double-contact R17d base for electrical safety.

Further increased output proved difficult to achieve, owing to the physics of the low pressure mercury discharge which becomes increasingly inefficient at higher loading. This increases electron density, and ionised mercury 3P states begin to come into Local Thermal Equilibrium with the electron temperature which results in the rate of quenching almost equalling the rate of excitation. Indeed it is impossible to obtain any more than 2.5 times the light output of a standard fluorescent lamp at any power level.

The problem was elegantly solved by Eugene Lemmers and John Aicher of GE, whose PowerGroove lamp allowed an increase to 2.2 times the normal light output with only 2.5 times the power dissipation. The novel crescent-shape section decreased the diffusion length while increasing the ambipolar diffusion loss rate and hence electron temperatures - resulting in a rather low electron density and hence minimising efficacy loss. The first lamps had single-sided grooves, but this resulted in an asymmetric light distribution, which was improved in 1960 with the double-grooved lamp featured here - which resulted in a further increase in efficacy by fitting the arc stream of a 9-foot lamp into an 8-foot tube. Vapour pressure is kept low by two special slanted grooves near the tube centre, and two missing grooves at one end.
´╗┐Manufacturer: General Electric U.S.A.
Lamp Power: 215 Watts
Lamp Current: 1.50 Amps
Lamp Voltage: 163 Volts
Cap Type: R17d Aluminium
Bulb Type: TD-54 TD-17 in eighths/inch
Bulb Finish: Cool White 3Ca3(PO4)2.Ca(F,Cl)2:Sb,Mn
Electrodes: Triple-Coil + Anode Plates Triple Carbonate emitter
Discharge Length:
Atmosphere: Hg | Ar
Luminous Flux: 14,000 lm (@ 100h)
Luminous Efficacy: 65.1 lm/W (@ 100h)
Colour Temperature & CRI: CCT: 4100K CRI: Ra60
Chromaticity Co-ordinates: CCx: CCy:
Rated Lifetime: 10000 hours
Warm-up & Re-strike Time: 1 minute Instant
Burning Position: Universal
Nominal Length: 2438 mm 96 inches
Factory: Circleville OH U.S.A.
Date of Manufacture: August 1987
Original Value:
References: 1) Fluorescent and Other Gaseous Discharge Lamps, W.E.Forsythe & E.Q.Adams, publ. Murray-Hill Books, 1948, p.96
2) The Electric Lamp Industry, A.Bright, publ. Macmillan Books, 1949, pp.412 & 501
3) GE Magazine of Light Vol.17 No.3 1948 p.3
4) GE Advert for New 85W Krypton Fluorescent Lamp, Time Magazine, 1st November 1948 p.39
5) GE #9200 Lamp Catalog, USA, 1953, p.18
6) GE #9200 Lamp Catalog, USA, 1977, p.69
7) GE #9200 Lamp Catalog, USA, 1993, p.4-5
8) GE #9200 Lamp Catalog, USA, 1996, p.4-5