Optics is the study of light, and its interaction with matter. It includes topics such as imaging systems, fiber optics, lasers, quantum optics, and more.

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What is a good book to self-teach optics?

I'm interested in camera lenses and how things like barrel distortion and lens flare happens, but know that one cannot just start there. I'm a math major and I've worked out of Strauss PDE book so I ...
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Optical bandpass filter at focal point of lens

Optical bandpass filters are designed for a particular angle of incidence (AOI), e.g. see Fig 4 here. However that is for the ray picture of light. Imagine I have a thin bandpass filter positioned ...
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How thin lens model work when there are two images with different distances from the lens?

I am trying to understand how thin lens camera work. From what I understand of thins lens model, the image is formed on image plane that obey the equation $$\frac1S_1 + \frac1S_2 = \frac1f$$ So ...
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42 views

Could a photon also be a fermion? [duplicate]

Some phycisits have found photons that has a spin of 1,5. Now fermions has always a half spin and bosons like photons always with a whole spin. But if those photons really exists are they than ...
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Parity conservation in second harmonic generation?

The second harmonic arises from susceptibility of third rank tensor $X^{(2)}$ which have (-1) parity. page 28 Let say two photons are absorbed and one is emitted, so the total change in parity is ...
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Natural light concentration [on hold]

Is it possible to use a stack of conical lenses to bring natural light to a specific focus and from there take it through optical fibers for illumination.
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Why is window glass only transparent from one directional axis?

If you look through a pane of common window glass the way it was meant to be looked through, it's clear. But if you look at it from the side it's not very clear at all, but a dark green color. One ...
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How is the Rayleigh criterion connected to the Abbe limit

I am interrested whether one can derive a formula for the point resolution (like Abbe did) of an optical system from the Rayleigh criterion (without the use of small angle approximation i.e. ...
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How do I find the constants in Cauchys equation for index of refraction for different wavelengths?

Im trying to find the indexes of refraction for my Dispersion of a Glass Prism lab. Specifically I need to use Cauchy's equation to find the index of refraction for different wavelengths. $$ ...
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How do those T-shirts that change color in the sun work?

When I was a kid, I asked my dad about them and he said (not in so many words) that it was because sunlight and artificial light have different spectrums and they picked colors that reflect only the ...
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Diffractive peak for high-frequency scattering from a sphere with small index of refraction?

How does a transparent sphere's shadow fade as $n\to 1$? Consider radiation of wavenumber $k$ incident on a transparent sphere of radius $a$ and index of refraction $n$ in the limit $ka \gg 1$. ...
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How do you calculate the intensity of the $m$'th fringe in a Young's slits diffraction pattern? [on hold]

I'm preparing for an exam on wave optics and am struggling with part d) of this question: c) A beam of coherent monochromatic light (wavelength=500nm) is incident normally of a plane of two slits ...
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What's the conductivity of graphene nanostructres (nanoribbon, nanomesh)?

As we know, the conductivity of graphene can be expressed with Kubo formula,including intra transition and inter transition. But does graphene nanoribbon or graphene nanomesh have the same ...
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Relationship between angular magnification and how much bigger the image appears

How is the angular magnification of a magnifying glass related with how much bigger the image appears to the user? Is it simply the same? If yes, why? (Let's assume that the object is placed in the ...
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43 views

Refractive index of red and blue light

if $\frac{\sin(I)}{n}=\sin(r)$ where $n$ is the refractive index, $I$ is angle of incidence and $r$ is angle of refraction (these are relative to the normal). How come blue light refracts at a ...
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Optical Retroreflectors: How Are the Faces So Accurately Righted?

This question is about Optical Retroreflectors (corner cubes) and how the extreme precision in their manufacturing is achieved. I suspect there is interesting basic physics involved, which is why the ...
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Distance between objective lens and eyepiece in a compound microscope [on hold]

why does the total distance between the objective lens and the eyepiece in a compound microscope needs to be greater than the sum of the focal length of objective lens and focal length of ...
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Why should the image screen be placed at fourth focal plane in 4f setup?

They call it the 4f setup. But when the image coming from the second lens is anyway collimated, why is it necessary to place the image screen at the fourth focal plane?
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Why one should follow Snell's law for shortest time?

whenever two media and two velocities are involved, one must follow Snell's law if one wants to take the shortest time. Why snells law must be followed to travel diffrent media in shortest time? ...
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43 views

Why does light propagate rectilinearly? [closed]

I found a question: Light propagates rectilinearly because of its: a. Frequency b. Velocity c. Wavelength d. Wave nature. Now the answer given in the reference is wave ...
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Add optical filter to discriminate between coherent and incoherent light to commercial airliner cockpit windows [closed]

I read about Planar's Transparent Displays yesterday morning on Slashdot.org, We will use them to replace each of the 4 quadrants of a Boeing 767 cockpit window for the objective of 4 independent ...
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1answer
23 views

Calculating f-stop with given focal length and desired depth of field?

I have a varifocal zoom lens set to a desired focal length and at known distance from the subject. I also have a desired depth of field. Given this information, can I calculate a theoretical f-number ...
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What is the explanation of the glory (optical phenomenon)?

Yesterday, I took the following picture. I was looking downwards from within an aircraft and I saw the 'glory' around the shadow of the plane on the clouds below. Wikipedia has an entry on the ...
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Explanation of ray caustics in E&M

My understanding (now) of a real caustic is that it is envelope of curves or ray-paths that arise due to reflection or refraction from the medium/manifold. My main question is, I am seeing the term ...
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Will these two coherent electromagnetic waves be in phase?

My question is how will I know if two coherent electromagnetic waves are in phase based on their phase difference. I just solved a problem which stated... Two coherent sources A & B send ...
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Gaussian beam interference

The superposition of a gaussian beam and a plane wave generates a pattern of rings whose phase shift before and after the focal plane (of the gaussian beam) is $\pi$. This means that if you measure ...
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Within what range of defocus from the object/image plane does the Fraunhoffer approximation hold?

The Fraunhoffer apporximation of diffraction is said to hold for an image "at infinity," or to be quantitative, for any observation point $R >> \frac{a^2}{\lambda}$. But it is said that, ...
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why interference pattern changes with given relation when the source slit changes?

Why for interference condition to be seen the dependence relation should be like $${\frac{s}{S}}<{\frac{\lambda}{d}}$$.Where $s$ is width of source slit and $S$ is the distance between the source ...
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59 views

what do we mean by speed of light dependent on direction?

I have a statement in textbook saying "When the speed of light is independent of direction,the secondary waves are spherical". Can someone tell when it is dependent on direction and how the secondary ...
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What happens if we stand in the centre of a sphere inside covered with as a mirror? [duplicate]

What happens if we stand inside a sphere covered with as a mirror? That is when we are at the centre of a spherical mirror, how the image of us is formed?
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addition of two lenses with a finite separation in between

Suppose there are two lenses with focal length $f_1$ and $f_2$ respectively. The effective focal length $f$ when they are combined is $1/f=1/f_1+1/f_2$, but this formula assumes the separation between ...
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Calculating angle of min deviation of prism [closed]

Two rays incident with angle 40 and 60 on one face of equilateral triangular prism the angle of deviation are equal .find angle of minimum deviation?
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Apparent depth is supposed to be independent of viewing angle but this seems inconsistent with critical angle diffraction

When rays from the object at some depth are draw so as to be incident at the critical angle (or some angle just lower) the ray is refracted along the surface. Retracing this line would give you an ...
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How far apart can the slits be in a double-slit experiment using direct sunlight?

In a normal double slit experiment, I'm told that sunlight doesn't produce a visible interference pattern because there is no stable phase relationship between the two slits. However, sunlight ...
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Light, the carrier of information. Is this hypothesis a known phenomenon?

I am seeking clarification on a naive insight that I experienced recently. It seems plausible and may be known to most academics and practitioners in the field but I would appreciate your knowledge ...
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Reflection and angle of refraction

Does the angle of refraction depend on the properties of the material if the angle of the incidence is the same for two different materials? Say I shed light on a surface with angle $ \theta $ and ...
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Unpolarized wave, $\Delta\varphi =\Delta \varphi(t)$?

I have seen a unpolarized wave defined in a number of places (e.g. here) as a wave such that: \begin{align} E_x&=E_0 \cos(kz-\omega t) \\ E_y&=E_0 \cos(kz-\omega t+\varphi) \end{align} Where ...
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Introducing a phase, what changes?

This question is related to: Mach-Zehnder interferometer and the Fresnel-Arago laws Let us say we have unpolarised wave taking the form: $$\psi=\psi_0 e^{i(kx-\omega t)+i\phi(t)}$$ Where $\phi$ ...
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Mach-Zehnder interferometer and the Fresnel-Arago laws

I have been reading this paper on a mathematical treatment of the Fresnel-Argo laws. In the paper they essentially they take the electric field: $$E_i=E_i(t)$$ and introduce a phase factor, ...
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Why is the wavelength of light proportional to the minimum angle of resolution?

E.g. why does the minimum angle of resolution increase as wavelength increases?
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Why long range ordering and higher order rotational symmetry leads to dense K-space ?

In case of Quasicrystals Why long range ordering and higher-order rotational symmetry leads to dense K-space ? And high rotational symmetry include modification in discrete spectral feature to ...
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Sech laser pulse time-bandwidth product calculation

Find the time bandwidth product for a $\operatorname{sech}$ shaped pulse. Attempt: I know that the time bandwidth product $\Delta t \Delta \omega$ for a $\operatorname{sech}$ shaped pulse must ...
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Structured light, infinite focus

Im interested in projecting a static image across a room that stays focused over a wide range of distances from the projector, without re-adjustment, for a structured light setup. ie, the target may ...
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3answers
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How can unpolarised light be produced from 2 beams with orthogonal polarisation?

Say I have 2 beams of equal intensity with orthogonal polarisation. Is there a way, using linear polarizers, half and quarter waveplates , to combine those two beams in such a way that they produce an ...
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Reflection of light rays

A set of light rays emitted from a point of an orange hits a smooth and flat surface. My question is: The angles of incidence are different, light rays are reflected towards different directions, why ...
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52 views

Laser resonator analytic formula for sum of modes

For a sum of N modes in a resonator with identical phases, find an analytic formula for the pulse shape in the limit of many modes. Use the analytic expression for the sum of a geometric series. ...
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Laser resonator modes

For a resonator, plot the intensity as a function of time for (i) when the modes have identical phases, and (ii) when the modes have random phases. Attempt Here is the equation for intensity (p. ...
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Fiber Optics: Is there a mechanical counterpart to the LPFG

I have read that many traditional mechanical devices in Fiber Optics are being replaced by in fiber solutions like the fiber coupler. I'm currently writing a survey paper about Fiber Optics in general ...
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Why does a fan blade appear to spin backwards when spun really fast?

This a phenomenon which I notice everyday but never really took an interest in. Why does a fan (or any other rotary object), when spinning really fast, 'appear' to slow down, upto a certain rpm, then ...
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What is the divergence of a beam from the output of a laser?

Diffraction through an aperture gives a half-angle divergence of $1.22\lambda/a$ where a is the aperture diameter. The half-angle divergence of a Gaussian beam is $\lambda/\pi w_0$ where $w_0$ is the ...