Edison Bulb Invention, Advantages and Disadvantages

Everyone knows if you need light and you have electricity you only need a bulb and an electrician to install it. You were born post electricity discovery and it may not mean a lot to you what it does. If you have a bulb you know it’s a matter of pressing a switch for you to see lighting flooding your area. This was not so from the 19th century backward, they used oil and firewood for lighting. The father of bulb lighting is an American scientist named Thomas Edison; he is credited for inventing the first commercial bulb. In honor of his name, the bulb was named after him.

edison light lamp

Experiment and invention

As early as 1800 alexander Volta in an experiment had observed a copper wire glow when it was connected between the two terminals of the battery. The glowing produced light and man has been in need of light, there was hope for a solution. Two years later Humphry Davy would experiment with a charcoal electrode and when connected with battery electricity it glowed. Carbon rod and platinum filament were noted to glow but the challenge was that they burned out after a few hours. In 1879 Thomas Edison experimented the glowing with carbon filament which had a better result and longer life. However, it is 1904 that tungsten filament was produced, the metal with the highest melting point known had a long life before it could burn.  To increase the lifetime, the filament was housed in clear glass with neutral gases or vacuum, this was to limit oxygen that accelerated burning.

Today the Edison bulb is made with a tungsten filament which gives an elegant yellow and warm glow. A solution for darkness had been found. An incandescent bulb uses the same technology which has been produced and used in their millions if not billions. Since then, there have been numerous improvement that has made the bulb light longer, brighter, and cheap to buy. Other technologies have been discovered in the field of electric lighting, this includes compact fluorescent and LED bulbs. Although the LED bulbs have turned to be the favorite because of its low power consumption, the legacy Edison bulb cannot be wished away. From homes, commercial offices, factories, and machines such as automobiles, the light is provided by the Edson bulb.


  1. They are stylish giving a yellow glow that is beautiful feel and sees.
  2. They produce warmth hence efficient in areas where the environment is cold and need to be warmed.
  3. They are dimmable- reduce the brightness
  4. They are cheap to acquire.
  5. They can work with low voltage for example 12V. They are available for either DC or AC electricity use.


  1. They are fragile, the filament easily breaks when dropped.
  2. They have low energy efficiency compared to other inventions.
  3. They have a low life span in comparison with other makes.


  • Residential lighting.
  • Commercial building lighting
  • Industrial lighting
  • Street and stadia lighting
  • Automobile lights
  • Spotlight touches


With over a century in use, the Edison bulb is far from becoming obsolete unless there is another bulb that performs better in all respect than the legacy bulb. As discovered by Edison the father of electric lighting, the world is better than it was. If you want to acquire one be sure with the ratings: AC or DC, wattage, screw or pin type, input voltage, and operating environment.  There is something about the lighting and your mood, switch on the Edison bulb and the feel-good hormone will change your raise your spirits.

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