We want to take a more in depth look at cfls from the electronic side. Today we have cfls with good electronic ballasts and a smaller size lamp overall. There are many unhappy people who are scared to try cfls again after so many issues when they came out in the past.
In 1975 the cfls developed were improved to not have the flicker effect. One of the main problems with these lamps still was the thermal condition. Since the heat had formally been able to spread throughout the tube shape and was now compacted to fit in cfls, problems arose leading to reliability issues. How then could they still be considered less hot than incandescent light bulbs?
The heat issue did not involve the bulbs being hot to touch, the problem of heat was in the components of the electronic ballast causing the components to fail. When it came to heat the safety was not harmful to humans, but to the internal components in the ballast with the higher temperature. Reliability is a function of components and the ballasts had hundreds of components, making them less reliable. The challenge was to make ballasts and lamps work for all different fixtures and circumstances.
Another question has arose when it comes to certain cfls that come in an orientation pattern – base up vs. base down ballast. This has to do with the mercury vapor pressure being different in the way the heat travels to light the lamp. Today this issue has been solved by using amalgams, which control the mercury vapor pressure, making the difference in ballasts insignificant.