Blasse's Pandora's box

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Upon his retirement from science Blasse wrote a paper (Blasse, J. Lumin. 72-74 (1997) 129) addressing unsolved problems in explaining luminescence phenomena of classical phosphors. He used the metaphor of Pandora's box. A box full of disaster that should remain closed. Yet, Blasse did open that box and therewith spread the unsolved problems over the luminescence community. Only the hope to solve those problems remained inside the box. Today, 25 years later, we will explore whether the hope has managed to provide answers. The unsolved problems related to the fundamental understanding of luminescence from WO42−, VO43−, Sb3+, Bi2+, Bi3+, Cu+, and Ce3+. Here we will show how vacuum referred binding energy diagrams can explain or can help to explain Blasse's unsolved problems of 1997.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100076
Number of pages6
JournalOptical Materials: X
Publication statusPublished - 2021


  • Bismuth luminescence
  • Electron transfer
  • Quenching phenomena


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