The emission of light or other forms of electromagnetic
radiation by a substance or object because of its high temperature.
Incandescence usually refers to the radiation of visible light or infrared.
An incandescent light bulb, for example, shines because the filament resists
the flow of electrons through it and becomes hot. The rise in temperature
excites electrons in the tungsten atoms
of the wire to higher energy states. Visible and infrared radiation is given
off as the electrons return to their original, lower energy states. Compare
AND OPTICAL PHENOMENA
AND NUCLEAR PHYSICS