chapter  98

Cathode Ray Tube Displays

WithChristopher J. Sherman

The cathode ray tube (CRT) is unequaled in its ability to produce dynamic, quality, high-information-content imagery at high resolution. Even more impressive is that it achieves this for a lower cost per pixel than any other comparable electronic display technology. For the instrument designer requiring a high-information-content display, it offers numerous advantages. As a raw image tube, it is commonly available as an off-the-shelf item with a broad infrastructure of vendors, integrators, support, and part suppliers. Interface standards are well established and as a complete system, ready to take a standard signal input, it is available worldwide in a variety of performance ranges. To meet different application requirements, it is available in diagonal sizes from 12 mm to over 1 m with resolution from thousands of pixels to over 5 million pixels per frame. Tube characteristics improve on a yearly basis, and prices continue to decrease. Although CRTs have been superseded by other display technologies, they are still used in many applications in laboratories, photography, transportation industry, and in military. They are used in medical applications for color comparisons [1,2].