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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7answers
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Are quantum effects significant in lens design?

Over on Photography, a question was asked as to why (camera) lenses are always cylindrical. Paraphrasing slightly, one of the answers and follow-up comments asserted that quantum effects are ...
8
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1answer
11k views

Why does the refractive index depend on wavelength? [duplicate]

Why do different wavelength get impeded more or less when in different materials? Moving with the same speed, but a longer physical distance would imply that the fields oscillate less times in the ...
21
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5answers
7k views

Why do nearsighted people see better with their glasses *rotated*?

If you are nearsighted (like me), you may have noticed that if you tilt your glasses, you can see distant objects more clear than with normally-positioned glasses. If you already see completely clear, ...
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0answers
139 views

Range Finder Question - Optical Filter For An Apd [closed]

I am working in a range finder project. I have encountered a problem with an Avalanche Photodiode. I am trying to use a pulsed laser on 980 nm(infrared) but I receive a lot of noise from the APD. I ...
3
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0answers
3k views

How does autorefractor work?

Autorefractors are being used by eye opticians for eye diagnosis. I searched internet for articles and wiki page as well but I wasn't satisfied. I am interested to know how do they actually work. How ...
1
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5answers
926 views

Sign convention in optics

Why is the sign convention used in the derivation of the lens formula and yet used again when it is applied in numerical problems? Won't the whole idea of sign convention be eliminated if it is used ...
14
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1answer
16k views

Will high power laser penetrate mirror?

Many nations are developing hi-energy laser weapon. My question is, what if target is coated with mirror like coating? Can laser (since laser is still light) penetrate mirror? If it can then how is it ...
2
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1answer
511 views

How “wide” is a beam of light? What is its half-diameter?

If you believe ray optics where a light ray is a straight line, a light beam is infinitely thin. If you think of fiber optics, you can guide a whole lot of photons down a fiber only one or a few ...
3
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2answers
516 views

Finding the illuminance from a triangular light source

Since most light sources in games are point-like, it's pretty difficult to approximate area light sources with point sources. As triangles are a universal form to represent 3D models (thus area light ...
0
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1answer
73 views

How occurs the enantiomorph of the mirror? [duplicate]

How occurs the enantiomorph of the mirror? I would like to know how occurs the RELATIONS OF THE RAYS with the mirror and the image, everything that happens to be flipped image from the right to the ...
4
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2answers
496 views

Inverse Fourier Transform Of K-space Image…what is the object space scale?

Checked around a buch and could not find any help. But I needed help with: Understanding that if I get the Inverse FT of K-space data, what is the scaling on the X-space (object space) resultant ...
18
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1answer
2k views

Are these sunglass lenses linearly polarized or what?

This is a difficult question to phrase, so please bear with me. I found some cheap sunglasses and pulled out the plastic lenses which are polarized. For clarity, I have labeled them as lens-1 and -2 ...
1
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1answer
2k views

Light dispersion in water

Simple question: Water is clearly not disspersive if we have it, for example, in a glass of water. We don't see the rainbow through a glass of water. However drops of water disperse light in the ...
0
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1answer
583 views

Transmission vs reflection grating

What are the advantages/disadvantages of a transmission vs a reflection grating? It seems like a transmission grating would be easiest to use. I'm trying to get a spectrum from Thomson scattered ...
3
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2answers
952 views

Perfect pinhole diffraction pattern with sharp fringes using a 632nm laser

I'm trying to produce a diffraction pattern with pinhole using a laser of 632nm wavelength .The pinholes' diameter are ranging from 10um , 25um , 50 um , 0.1mm and so on . I also have good lenses for ...
7
votes
3answers
218 views

How to delay visible light

I want to delay visible light (~450nm-600nm) by 10ns. One way would just be to have it travel about 10ft since the speed of light is about 1ft/ns. Could I reduce that length by sending it through some ...
1
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1answer
286 views

Calculating the magnification of an optical microscopy system

I have a microscopy system that is set up as follows : DSLR with a crop factor of 1.6x ( equivalent to magnification, I believe ) An adaptor optic, for attach the DSLR to the microscope, listed as a ...
2
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1answer
124 views

Cross-section of a wave packet

In text books, wave packets are one-dimensional drawings. But we live in a three-dimensional world. Suppose a wave packet from a HI-cloud (frequency 1420 MHz) is approaching the earth, distance about ...
6
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1answer
313 views

Can solar furnace achieve higher temperature than sun surface? [duplicate]

Can solar furnace achieve higher temperature than sun surface? I guess not, but I'm not sure about that. Can you check my reasoning: -------- My reasoning ----------- Consider Sun as a black body ...
6
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2answers
1k views

Why does a glass window reflect white objects white from an atomic scatterers’ viewpoint?

Related: Is a white object always white? If you are standing in front of a glass window during the day, you can see your dim white t-shirt’s reflection in the window. The reflection is dim because ...
2
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1answer
64 views

How does an optic-mechanical laser read and send binary bytes to a CPU?

Thid greatly concerns physics, since a more refined version of my title will be rehearsed below: How is the physical structure of the mechanical eye use a laser to read binary bits held on an optical ...
2
votes
1answer
225 views

about laser wavelength and wave form

I watched a short introduction video online. There are few concepts which are a bit confusing. 1) The video said the laser is single mode (monochromatic), the wavelength is 780nm, so what is that ...
5
votes
1answer
497 views

Where in the atmosphere is the blue light scattered?

I have searched Wikpedia and the Physics Stack Exchange archieves, and I cannot find the answer to these two related questions. If it is, please guide me to where this information is located. If ...
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2answers
5k views

Effective Refractive Index

Can some one please explain in simple words that what is effective refractive index? How it is different from the refractive index? And how we can calculate the effective refractive index?
-1
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1answer
398 views

Eigenvalue of Optical waveguide [closed]

Consider you have a slab waveguide having n1=3.5 and n2=1.45. The value of critical angel is 24.5 degree approx. Similarly effective refractive index will be in between 1.45 and 3.5. How can we find ...
6
votes
1answer
135 views

3D coherence of light speckles- difference between Airy and gaussian speckles

In this article, http://www.dfm.uninsubria.it/laboferri/web_page/articoli_pdf/PRA_2009-Magatti-Three_dimensional_coherence_of_light_speckles-experiment.pdf, the 3D-coherence properties of light ...
3
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1answer
2k views

Calculating minimum object distance for a lens

I am trying to figure out the Minimum Object Distance based on a simulation available here. In case you can't open it (it's a Java applet...) I'll describe it briefly. It shows an object emitting ...
3
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0answers
60 views

SHS Interferometer and diffraction limit

I'm currently researching Spatial Heterodyned Spectrometers (SHS) and I'm a bit at a loss understanding the influence of the diffraction limit. I'll be measuring a diffuse visible light source with ...
2
votes
3answers
416 views

How Does $\epsilon$ Relate to the Dampened Harmonic Motion of Electrons?

I realize that the permittivity $\epsilon$ of a substance is easily calculated based on diffraction angles, but I am not satisfied with merely measuring it experimentally. I wish to understand its ...
2
votes
0answers
121 views

Line-shape asymmetry in undergraduate Hydrogen-Deuterium experiment

I'm working as an LA (undergraduate TA) for an undergraduate physics laboratory experiment where students test the Bohr model and use reduced mass to determine the approximate mass of the neutron. In ...
0
votes
1answer
324 views

Laser action on one side mirrors (half silvered) and prisms

I know that half silvered mirrors are used in the production of laser emission. Can half silvered mirrors be used outside the instrument so the rays get reflected back on one side of the mirror and ...
0
votes
1answer
470 views

Why cellphone cameras don't have optical zoom

I have just basic understanding of Physics from elementary school. But I still wonder, why after 10 years of cameras in cellphones, there is no "small-pack" optical zoom. I think there should be no ...
5
votes
1answer
376 views

Is this a Fata Morgana?

I took this photo. Above the horizon there is a thick layer that looks like a cloud, but it surely isn't. Is this a Fata Morgana? What do you think? EDIT: I think the more appropriate name is ...
0
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1answer
133 views

Is there a way to define a function of a meniscus curvate?

If you cut a thin slit in thin opaque material and then put it into water and pull it out, the meniscus will be formed in the slit. For my research I need to know if it is analytically possible to ...
2
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1answer
322 views

Optics for projecting OLED screen DLP style

I just bought a small OLED screen and was wondering is it possible to make a screen surface a little bit bigger ( 2x ) by projecting it through some optics on translucent surface. It reminds me of ...
6
votes
2answers
475 views

polarization of the lower mode gaussian beam

In most introductory analysis of Gaussian beam optics, Helmoltz scalar optics is assumed. Hence polarisation is ignored. But I'm not clear what are the possible orientations for the lower transverse ...
4
votes
2answers
6k views

Relation between Radiance and Irradiance

I know the radiance is expressed as $$\text{[Radiance]} = \frac{W \cdot m^2}{\text{sterad}}$$ and $$\text{[Irradiance]} = W \cdot m^2$$ But what's the relation between theese two quantities? Is the ...
2
votes
3answers
6k views

Focal length, power and magnification

In refracting (lens not mirror based) telescopes, to have a large magnification the objective lens needs to have a large focal length. if $\text{Power} = \frac{1}{\text{focal length}}$ then that ...
2
votes
1answer
416 views

Reflections in a glass of water

I've noticed that if you take a full glass of water and look from above, through the water, you can't see through the glass sides - instead, you see a reflection. I tried with a laser pointer and the ...
3
votes
2answers
308 views

Fiber optics with broadband, incoherent light

I wonder if someone could help clarify waveguiding with broadband, incoherent light please. If we take a telecomms fiber, which is single-moded above ~1.4 μm and couple a laser beam in, we assume ...
1
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1answer
459 views

Effect of slits and a lens

We have a screen with two slits (Young style) separated by a distance $d$, one of them receives a planar wave of $600nm$, the other receives a planar wave of $400nm$. Behind the slits there's a screen ...
3
votes
1answer
524 views

What is the largest diameter an optical fiber can have? - for nonimaging visible light transmission

Is there any theoretical limitation on the size of the diameter of an Plastic optical fiber? I would like to transmit visible sunlight through it. I see bundles of small cores available but wouldn't ...
0
votes
1answer
347 views

Formation on image on screen?

When we first learn elementary geometrical optics, the first thing taught to us is the two broad divisions of the type of reflection.-Regular and Irregular or Diffused. The difference in cause for ...
0
votes
1answer
204 views

Seeing the image as explained by Geometrical optics?

I was thinking about how the human visual system perceives the position of an object. I assume it essentially does this by focussing the incoming rays onto the retina and then judging from the power ...
8
votes
0answers
132 views

mode-locking a laser on prime-powers' frequencies

Being rather a theoretician than an experimental physicist, I have a question to the community: Is it experimentally possible to mode-lock a laser (fixed phase relationships between the modes of the ...
2
votes
2answers
90 views

Art : A Particular Mirror

There is a particular mirror used here (1 minute 26 seconds) in this video, which reflects light in a way I've never seen. I was hoping maybe one of you might know what kind of mirror this is, so ...
1
vote
1answer
559 views

Simple Question: Speed of Electromagnetic Waves in a Medium

If the speed of an electromagnetic wave in a particular medium is such that $v = c$, the speed of light, does this mean that the permeability $\mu = \mu_0$, i.e. that of a vacuum and the index of ...
4
votes
1answer
726 views

Light scattering vs roughness

I've been searching for an answer to this question in professional circles for a while; now I'd like to ask here, to find out why the answer is not there :) In my optical modelling (computer ...
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0answers
253 views

3D holograms like Miku Hatsune? How do you make such things?

I am making a speech about Miku Hatsune 3D hologram, and I would like to know how they are made! I love Miku and Len...(drools) please help by explaining!
2
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1answer
952 views

What is a “lateral fringe displacement”?

I encountered the term "lateral fridge displacement" in my optics homework for a problem about inserting a thin plate of glass over one of Young's double splits. So what does "lateral fringe ...