Not all displays are powered by liquid-crystal display (LCD) technology. While LCD is, in fact, the most common display technology, there are other display technologies available. Vacuum fluorescent display (VFD), for instance, is an alternative display technology. It’s actually one of the oldest display technologies on the market. It was pioneered before LCD and light-emitting diode (LED).

What Is VFD?

VFD is a display technology that involves the use of phosphor-coated tubes and electrons to produce light. When the phosphor-coated tubes are exposed to electrons — the electrons come from a power source — they will illuminate.

Dozens of electronics feature a built-in VFD. You won’t find VFDs in traditional displays like computer monitors and TVs. Rather, VFDS are typically found in simple displays. Some of the most common applications for VFDs include digital alarm clocks, automotive dashboards, portable consoles and stereo systems.

VFDs and Electroluminescent

VFDs essentially work by leveraging the electroluminescent properties of phosphor. The term “electroluminescent” refers to the ability to generate light in response to electricity. There are electroluminescent materials that illuminate as electricity flows through them — and phosphor is one of them.

While there are different types of VFDs, they all feature phosphor. Most VFDs feature a series of tubes, each of which is covered in a layer of phosphor. As electricity flows through them, the tubes will generate light. The tubes are blasted with electrons, which causes them to generate light.

Benefits of VFDs

There are several benefits associated with VFDs. For starters, they are incredibly bright. VFDs are typically brighter than LCDs and LEDs. They also support a wide range of colors. You aren’t limited to choosing VFDs in basic colors; you can find them in a variety of colors.

It’s important to note, however, that both the brightness and choice of colors will affect the lifespan of a VFD. The phosphor-coated tubes within a VFD can burn out. And the greater the brightness, the faster they’ll burn out. Certain colors can also shorten the lifespan of a VFD. Nonetheless, VFDs are still long-lasting. And when properly maintained, you don’t have to worry about VFDs failing prematurely.

In Conclusion

VFD is an electroluminescent display technology. It involves the use of phosphor-coated tubes and electrons. The tubes are blasted with electrons. When exposed to electrons, the tubes will illuminate to produce light. VFDs support a variety of colors and a high level of brightness, making them a popular alternative to other display technologies like LCDs.