A type of flat-panel display that works by sandwiching a neon/xenon gas mixture between two sealed glass plates with parallel electrodes deposited on their surfaces. The plates are sealed so that the electrodes form right angles, creating pixels.

Description of Plasma Display

When a voltage pulse passes between two electrodes, the gas breaks down and produces weakly ionized plasma, which emits UV radiation. The UV radiation activates color phosphors and visible light is emitted from each pixel. Also called "gas discharge display," a flat-screen technology that uses tiny cells lined with phosphor that are full of inert ionized gas (typically a mix of xenon and neon).

Three cells make up one pixel (one cell has red phosphor, one green, one blue). The cells are sandwiched between x- and y-axis panels, and a cell is selected by charging the appropriate x and y electrodes. The charge causes the gas in the cell to emit ultraviolet light, which causes the phosphor to emit color. The amount of charge determines the intensity, and the combination of the different intensities of red, green and blue produce all the colors required.Today, Plasma displays are becoming more and more popular. Compared to conventional CRT displays, plasma displays are about one-tenth the thickness--around 4'', and one-sixth the weight--less than 67 pounds for a 40" display.

They use over 16 million colors and have a 160 degree-viewing angle. Companies such as Panasonic, Fujitsu, and Pioneer manufacture plasma displays. Plasma displays were initially monochrome, typically orange, but color displays have become very popular and are used for home theater and computer monitors as well as digital signs. The plasma technology is similar to the way neon signs work combined with the red, green and blue phosphor technology of a CRT. Plasma monitors consume significantly more current than LCD-based monitors.


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