To start with, this picture seems to have multiple images. Actually, they are the same image, separated spectrally. The bluer or shorter wavelengths of the image are shifted up from, and the redder or longer wavelengths are shifted down from, their actual physical positions. The long curved horizontal lines are neon or neon-type other tubes, and they are emitting pure line spectra. It seems that each neon-type tube is emitting multiple, distinct spectral lines, one for each type of molecule in the tube.
The vertical stripes are probably broadband white lights, whose spectrum gradually changes colors over a wide portion of the picture.
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Last Updated on 8/1/2005
by Richard Pellessier