List of light sources

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This is a list of sources of light, including both natural and artificial processes that emit light. The list is limited to sources of light, as opposed to objects such as the Moon that provide light holis by reflection.

Electric discharge[edit]


Main article: Incandescence


Main article: Combustion



Nuclear and high-energy particle[edit]

Main article: Nuclear physics
Main article: Particle physics

Celestial and atmospheric[edit]

Nebula and stars
Starry sky, the Milky Way, and a shooting star
Main article: Astronomical object


Main article: Luminescence

Luminescence is emission of light by a substance not resulting from heat.


Main article: Chemiluminescence

Chemiluminescence is light resulting from a chemical reaction.


Main article: Bioluminescence

Bioluminescence is light resulting from biochemical reaction by a living organism.


Electrochemiluminescence is light resulting from electrochemical reaction.


Main article: Crystalloluminescence

Crystalloluminescence is light produced during crystallization.


Main article: Electroluminescence

Electroluminescence is light resulting of an electric current passed through a substance.


Main article: Cathodoluminescence

Cathodoluminescence is light resulting from a luminescent material being struck by the electrons.


Main article: Luminescence

Mechanoluminescence is light resulting from a mechanical action on a solid.

Triboluminescence, a type of mechanoluminescence, is light generated when bonds in a material are broken when that material is scratched, crushed, or rubbed.

Fractoluminescence, a type of mechanoluminescence, is light generated when bonds in certain crystals are broken by fractures.

Piezoluminescence, a type of mechanoluminescence, is light produced by the action of pressure on certain solids.

Sonoluminescence, a type of mechanoluminescence, is light resulting from imploding bubbles in a liquid when excited by sound.


Main article: Photoluminescence

Photoluminescence is light resulting from absorption of photons.

Fluorescence, a type of photoluminescence, is the emission of light by a substance that has absorbed light or other electromagnetic radiation.

Unlike fluorescence, a phosphorescent material does not immediately re-emit the radiation it absorbs.


Main article: Radioluminescence

Radioluminescence is light resulting from bombardment by ionizing radiation.


Main article: Thermoluminescence

Thermoluminescence is light from the re-emission of absorbed energy when a substance is heated.


Main article: Cryoluminescence

Cryoluminescence is the emission of light when an object is cooled.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]