Questions related to the perception and measurement of light (primarily in the visible range), its mathematical description, the reproduction of colors by different means, color combinations, etc. Please use the tag [electromagnetic-radiation] if you want to refer to the general form of light.

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Decoherence of a Coherent Beam

If retarding films (i.e. wave plates) can retard the electric components of light (based on the films thickness) without affecting it's direction, couldn't I use a retarding film of randomly varying ...
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2answers
79 views

Why do two beams of light pass through one another without interacting?

Why is it that if I have two torches, each shining rays in perpendicular directions at perpendicular screens, such that the beams cross, then the images on the respective screens are independent of ...
2
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0answers
21 views

Odd order of colour fringes around cloud

The other day I took this photograph of a thundercloud that moved between myself and the sun. Around the edge of the cloud there were some coloured fringes that I first took to be a variant on a ...
2
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2answers
45 views

How is the backlight in a LCD monitor dispersed equally?

How is the backlight in a LCD monitor dispersed equally? I mean are there any layers that disperse the light?
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2answers
74 views

Would passing horizontally polarized light through a varying width vertical slit allow you to measure the positional (x) amplitude of light? [duplicate]

I have found closely related questions on StackExchange, but (surprisingly) not this exact question. Seems some answers say individual photons do not have amplitude, only when traveling with other ...
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0answers
34 views

Why the underside of an object isn't a different colour after light reflects off a different coloured surface

If you were to place a blue plate in front of a green background and shine a light at the blue plate. The light that hits the blue plate would reflect the blue wavelength and when the reflected ...
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0answers
11 views

Polarization in LCDs why the light need to be polorized twice? [closed]

In Lcd Screens there is a prcess called polarization. Two question about it: 1. Why is it needed to pass the light through two polarizers ? 2. How des a pixel devide the light to three sub pixel and ...
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1answer
67 views

Is Lorentz transformation applicable of light itself?

I've just studied Einstein's Special Theory of Relativity and have followed most part of it. I was just wondering that whether the equations of Lorentz transformation are applicable on light? i.e. can ...
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1answer
76 views

Is it possible to produce coherent light with a thermal source? [closed]

Coherent light means monochromatic light and alle waves have the same phase difference. This is given for laser, where the resonator is a potential box and the outgoing waves have the same phase ...
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2answers
59 views

Frames of reference and why are they different

Here is a quote from "The Elegant Universe" by Brian Greene. Imagine two countries that have been at war are sitting down to sign a treaty ending hostilities while traveling aboard a train that is ...
2
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1answer
39 views

Filming light in slo mo

So I was thinking of a cool video I could make when I thought of filming a video of me turning on a light. I thought that if you film yourself turning on a light and slo mo that video enough times ...
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1answer
28 views

Relation between temperature and black body radiation

How can one derive the amount of light as well as the shortest wavelength of the emitted light from the temperature of an object due to black body radiation? Shouldn't the amount of light emitted ...
2
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1answer
111 views

If atoms are mostly empty space, why doesn't light pass through everything?

Atoms are mostly empty space, and although I now understand why matter doesn't pass through other matter, why don't photons pass through the empty space of the atoms? Is it the same sort of idea as ...
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1answer
37 views

Do the mediums decrease or increase the speed of light? (source to target) [duplicate]

If sun is the source of light then is it possible that the speed of light might increase depending on the mediums its going through or its not possible.
3
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0answers
54 views

Fastest path of light [duplicate]

Fermat's principle of least time says that light always takes the fastest path to any point. So how can light know which is the fastest path without taking all the paths first?
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1answer
79 views

Are we working in the double slit argumentation with destructive interference arguments?

Stimulating water with two long straight bars one could produce linear waves. Having the right distance between the bars and the correct frequency of the steady system we get in the middle between the ...
21
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3answers
3k views

Why isn't the color of a molecule a combination of the colors of its component atoms?

I was watching a documentary on youtube regarding Quantum Physics when it introduced the wavelengths of light emitted. Did a bit more research over the internet and I believe I understand the gist of ...
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1answer
88 views

How do I convert lux to lumens

Overview... I'm a novice in the very basics of light physics and calculation between various units. I'm sure this is a very simple problem to those who know the process. And, before we continue, this ...
12
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2answers
3k views

Is true black possible?

Black is the absence of light because it absorbs light, but when we create black paint or black objects, light is always reflected, either in all directions in matte or smoothly in shiny black ...
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0answers
129 views

Why can I turn light red or blue by holding my finger up to it?

This is a difficult phenomenon to explain. Imagine you have an opaque object partially covering a very bright light source, for example, an object held up against the sky. The left hand diagram is ...
2
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1answer
42 views

A half covered lens

Let's say there's an object in front of a convex lens. I have a piece of paper behind the lens at the right location such that it will the lens will form an image on the paper. The object is ...
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0answers
47 views

Relativity - Diffraction Of Light

Following thought experiment. Inside a rocket, right in the middle, we place two lasers pointing in opposite directions. Both emitting the same wavelength. The Left wall of the rocket is L1 while ...
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1answer
44 views

Is redshift possible if relative speed is 0?

Since we are in a galaxy that is moving 1M mph, and the speed of light is constant, is redshift affected by whether you are facing toward or away from the direction the galaxy is moving? Suppose you ...
0
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2answers
109 views

Could time dilation bend the path of a photon? Does time dilation have a refractive index?

The main question I am getting at is, does time dilation have a refractive index? What I mean is, if I were to shoot a laser past a black hole, would the laser's path "bend" strictly from time ...
2
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1answer
48 views

My glasses seem to be polarizing the light when they want. What is happening?

When I put the glasses on and I look at my computer monitor and I turn in a certain angle everything becomes black. When I do it on my laptop screen though I need a different angle. Finally when I ...
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2answers
73 views

Do rainbow shows spectral lines?

A spectral line is the electromagnetic radiation emitted when the electron jumps from higher orbital to a lower orbital of an atom. Water mainly consists of two elements namely hydrogen and oxygen, ...
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1answer
54 views

Converging light

Imagine that we emit a light pulse. As is the nature of light, it will expand. However, light is affected by gravitational fields and light has its own. Therefore, will the light converge given ...
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0answers
17 views

About atomic transitions

I accomplished my homework but it opened a whole pandora's box of things I do not quite understand, so I would appreciate help. In x direction linearly polarized light excites atom transition from ...
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3answers
77 views

Principle of Sufficient Reason on light travelling in straight line

I was reading a book Laws and Symmetry by Bas C. Van Fraassen I found that there is an argument for arguing that light travel in straight line: Leibniz's reconstruction of these arguments goes ...
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2answers
101 views

Speed of light and perception

So I'm reading a book called "The Elegant Universe" and here is a part of it Imagine two countries that have been at war are sitting down to sign a treaty ending hostilities while traveling aboard a ...
0
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1answer
38 views

Can high-power LEDs remotely control a whole room? [closed]

Let's say I have 4 appliances in rectangular based room of about 60 square meters with white walls. The appliances are using infrared receivers with a filter of 38 kHz. Would it be possible to apply ...
2
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2answers
98 views

Is light a particle with EMF or does it travel in wave? [duplicate]

Is light a particle which has a electromagnetic field around it OR does the particle itself travels in a wave like motion? IS it just the EM field which moves in a wavy motion like ripples? (Please ...
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1answer
16 views

Do electric sinusidal waves rotate 45 degrees too when light pass through a hollow cylindrical magnet or just the sinusoidal magnetic waves do that?

Do electric sinusoidal waves rotate 45 degrees too when light pass through a hollow cylindrical magnet or just the sinusoidal magnetic waves do that?
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1answer
33 views

Saturation current vs frequency

In the photocurrent experiment, if the intensity of light is kept constant, but the frequency is slightly increased, what's the effect on the saturation current? I think saturation current should ...
1
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1answer
64 views

Can a one-way mirror effect be reversed?

I understand to get the effect of the one-way, one side needs to have light to produce the mirror, leaving the darkened side with the ability to see through. I would like to know if there is a way to ...
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0answers
25 views

How can three consecutive polarizing filters let any light through? [duplicate]

Say I have three sheets of Polaroid in series. I also have an unpolarized light source. Let the first sheet of Polaroid be set up vertically so that only waves oscillating in the vertical direction ...
3
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1answer
61 views

Why does light “expand”?

The "opening" for light to travel out of a flashlight is circular. Why does the light shine on the objects the flashlight is pointed at over a much larger surface area than the surface area of the ...
2
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1answer
47 views

Why does sunlight cause colors to fade?

If you leave something outside, its colors seem to inevitably fade or bleach due to exposure. Is this due to UV absorption? What sort of mechanism causes this - is it that man-made dyes deform on a ...
2
votes
1answer
77 views

Pinhole Camera Problem!

I was reading slides of a university course and in one of the slides it says 1 Eyes/cameras can’t have VERY small holes because that limits the amount of entering light 2 and diffracts/bends ...
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1answer
79 views

Determining the path of a light ray

Let's consider a ray in the plane $xy$. Let the refractive index be defined in any point of the plane with the function $n(x,y)$. In time $t=0$ the ray is located in coordinates $(x_0, y_0)$ and its ...
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0answers
36 views

473 nm light through a single mode fiber designed to operate between 1500 and 1600 nm

Can we send light with 473 nm through a single mode fiber designed to operate between 1500 to 1600 nm spectrum? The radius of the fiber core is 4.25 micrometer, NA=0.12 and the single-mode cut-off is ...
3
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2answers
216 views

What would happen to a star if a Dyson sphere lined with mirrors reflected a significant portion of the stars light back to the star

I have looked for similar questions here on stack exchange. The closest example to this that I found is Could a Dyson sphere destroy a star. That question assumed less than perfect absorption of ...
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1answer
56 views

How fast would you have to go to claim you saw the red light as green due to the Doppler Effect?

Driving toward it, I suspect you would have to be going at relativistic speeds. Calculating this, it appears to be around 1/6 the speed of light when driving directly at it, but since you are on the ...
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1answer
53 views

Why does radiance remain constant along rays of light through empty space?

In Radiometry, radiance (L) is defined as flux density per unit area per unit solid angle. If we move further along a ray, away from a point, shouldn't the radiance decrease? I am unable to grasp an ...
0
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1answer
48 views

How can light experience a force [duplicate]

According to the second law of Newton f=ma only objects with mass can experience a force. But light can be bent by gravity and is not supposed to have a mass. How ...
0
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1answer
24 views

Polarized Filtering Frequency Shift?

A polarized filter is exposed to a unpolarized light source. The output of the filter should be of lower intensity, hence lower energy. Should not the filtered light be of a lower frequency to ...
0
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1answer
78 views

Why does the sky look blue rather than violet? [duplicate]

Sky looks blue because because our eyes are sensitive to blue colour. But when viewed through a camera why don't we see violet of the sky even though we can see violet colour of other pictures taken ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Can a magnifying glass work on EM radiation other than visible light?

A magnifying glass is a convex lens which allows us to bend visible light, thus the image of the object appears larger. My question is, can a magnifying glass work on the rest of the electromagnetic ...
0
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3answers
86 views

Can we see a rainbow on moon or any other celestial body?

We see rainbows after rainfall on earth... According to my understanding a rainbow is formed as a result of scattering of light....Then is it possible that we can be able to see a rainbow on the ...
2
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1answer
96 views

Understanding the behavior of light/photons inside a Laser

I am trying to establish a model inside my head of how light behaves but find it hard with all the seemingly contradicting information. For example, electrons inside a Laser are raised to a higher ...