Well, I have some doubts about two electromagnetic phenomena that may be related so I wanted to ask you if you could explain them to me.

The first one happend some days ago: I was about to go to bed, all the lights in the house were off, but when I was in my bedroom I realized that the table lamp of the living room was switching on and off automatically, and not only the light was being turned on and off, but also the switch was being pushed. After some minutes, there was a massive blackout all over the city. How can you explain that?

The other one I want you to help me to find out what is happening is related to the fluorescent lamp in my bedroom... When it's dark and the light is off, you can see that the lamp twinkles. Why does that happen?

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    $\begingroup$ If there was a massive blackout in the city then there should be articles you can link to that would give more information of the occurrence. $\endgroup$ – user47014 Jul 28 at 15:41

For your first question, the most likely explanation is that your local power grid was trying to prevent your house from losing power by compensating; they typically do this a few times (hence the flickering) before they crash.

As for your second question, fluorescent lights work by charging up a gas (commonly mercury vapor) with electricity. This gas emits UV light, which then excites electrons in a phosphorus coating inside the bulb, which glows as a result, and this glowing coating is what we see when we turn on the light.

The thing is, when electricity is turned off, the coating doesn't stop glowing immediately. It takes time for the electrons in the coating to decay back into their ground state, and as a result they may glow dimly for a while after, which is probably what you're seeing.


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