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Neon's Dad

January 06, 1985

In the article about the art exhibit at the Neon Museum of Art in Los Angeles ("Neon Art Museum Exhibit: It's a Gas," by Marlena Donohue, Dec. 12), Donohue says, "Neon was invented in 1910 by the Frenchman Georges Claude."

Wrong. Neon, the exciting of fluorescent gases by an electric current, was invented by Nikola Tesla (1856-1943). He demonstrated the use of glass tubing bent into various shapes and designs May 20, 1891, at a lecture given for electrical engineers at Columbia University.

Tesla, for that matter, made neon and fluorescent lights practical and the whole transmission of electric power over distance possible by his polyphase alternating current method, in use today throughout the world.

EDSON ANDRE JOHNSON

La Canada

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