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You are seeing only one color from each droplet. Even though each droplet reflects the whole spectrum, only one color gets to your eye. The rest of the light from a single droplet is sent somewhere else than your eye (maybe into the eye of someone standing near you). So if you see a thick blue band in a rainbow, the blue band is formed by many reflections ...


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This Wikipedia article gives a LOT of detail regarding rainbow formation https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rainbow To make a long story short, each wavelength (color) reflects off of the back of a raindrop at a slightly different angle, of approximately 42 degrees. To see the rainbow, the sun has to be at your back, to allow the reflected light to enter your ...


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Interesting question because the diagram is correct but I too have never seen this in the lab. It turns out that the dispersion of the material and its thickness has to be very large to observe this. Here is a ray trace simulation: Bar geometry, 7.5cm x 1cm, Glass SF11 (Highly dispersive with Abbe number ~25), Ray wavelengths 380nm (blue) and 780nm ...



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