Questions tagged [geometric-optics]

The subfield of optics in which light propagation is approximated in terms of rays. It mainly includes reflection and refraction on surfaces.

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Ideal lens surface to prevent spherical aberration

I've been writing a program to trace light rays through various surfaces. I have it simulating refraction and reflection (including total internal reflection) and out of curiosity I wanted to try ...
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How to simulate the effectiveness of the designed light reflector structure? [closed]

I designed the reflector structure of the street light. The mathematical equation for the structure of the reflector is expressed in the form of a polynomial function. I'd like to simulate it to see ...
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What is the right option for this question? I think its d but some sources on internet say its c but their explanation is not convincing enough [closed]

According to me, first, the incident rays parallel to principal axis on the convex mirror will meet at focus, so v is 30 cm. for concave mirror, u is -20 cm and by using the mirror formula, the value ...
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Magnification of an object placed in water due to a concave mirror [closed]

Here is a question that appeared in my test: A concave mirror of focal length 15 cm is placed in water of refractive index $\mu = 3/2$. Water is filled upto 30 cm. An object of height 1 cm is placed ...
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On the definition of ray (optics) and wavefront of light

Wikipedia defines a ray as "[...] a curve that is perpendicular to the wavefronts of the actual light, and that points in the direction of energy flow". But the usual meaning of a ray in ...
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I seek a highly specular reflective (>99%) surface for UVC (~253.7 nm) photons. Is such a surface possible?

Does the answer change with the angle of incidence? If specular reflectance changes with angle of incidence, what is the relationship between them? If such surfaces are possible, where can I find a ...
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Plane mirror with focusing/accommodation Question

For plane mirrors, when considering accommodation (focusing system)-- do we account the distance twice? or just the distance that is reflected back to us ex. if a person is 10 cm away from a mirror -- ...
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Mechanism: Instantaneously vary frequency of photons emitted, or passing, by, over a wide range of frequencies, with reliable consistent precision?

For an optical computing application, I need to set frequency of photons emitted or passing by a small mechanism, instantaneously, and it needs to be able to change this frequency from one instance to ...
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On the optical properties of quadrupolar magnets

Here's the magnetic field produced by a quadrupole Citing from Barr, Giles; Devenish, Robin; Walczak, Roman; Weidberg, Tony Particle Physics in the LHC Era (Oxford Master Series in Physics) (p.55,56). ...
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Image created by a parabolic mirror when the object is at the center of curvature

I am told that the image created by a parabolic mirror is the same size as the object when it is on the center of curvature, which is twice away from the focus of the parabola. I tried to prove this ...
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Is the Jones matrix always $2 \times 2$?

I have only seen a $2\times2$ Jones matrix. It makes sense that it has such dimension but is there a Jones matrix different from this? perhaps a general form?
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Range of accommodation in myopia

Here's what I understand about accommodation of the eye and correcting myopia with a diverging lens. (Source material) An ideal eye can accommodate and focus any object that is farther to the eye than ...
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Why do some anti-reflective (or anti-glare) lenses use layers of materials with alternately very high and very low refractive indices?

Some specials lenses like this (or coatings on them) try to minimize the refractive index, or the change thereof, or at least make the change very gradual. But others apparently do the exact opposite, ...
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Replace defocus on telescope with negative lens

I am wondering if you could estimate the strength of your glasses by the amount of defocus on your refractor. So below I have a keplerian telescope with 2 positive lenses. If it is in focus, you get ...
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Normal Prism + Geometric Optics

I'm interested in finding such minimum angle of a prism, which ensures that all the rays pass through it, irrespective of the incident angle. Let's suppose the refractive index of the prism $\mu (= \...
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Why do we draw two rays from a same point on an object during image formation?

When we draw ray diagrams for image formation of an object through refraction or reflection we generally draw two rays emerging from a common point on the given object, by our nature of thinking (or) ...
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How will light rays behave if they enter lens vertically,i.e. from top?

What will happen to light rays if they enter convex lens from pointed side or from plane side of concave lens. See image for clarification.
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How do objects across a flat surface appear distorted?

Imagine looking at an object after a planar interface. It can be proven that if angles are small, $y'=y\frac{n_1}{n_2}$. Steps are easy but this result confuses me and I'm not sure to have understood ...
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Specular and diffuse reflection at the same time

if we know that tomatoes absorb all the light and reflect the red diffusely, how can we see the reflection of all the light specularly at the shinnig point? there isnt an absorption of other colors at ...
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Phase difference and path difference relation confusion

If two light waves of same wavelength reaches the point $ P$, then what is the relationship between path difference and phase difference? In many books I have seen that they assume two 1-D equation ...
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What is the minimum size of an object to cast a shadow on the entire Earth?

When I fly up(don't ask me how), I see how my Sun's shadow on Earth is getting bigger but dimmer as the Sun's light is reflected from other objects. As I flew higher and higher in the direction of the ...
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General criteria for whether or not a mirror will form images

The most general form of a mirror in one dimension is a differentiable function $f:\mathbb R \rightarrow \mathbb R$, for which $f(x)$ determines the vertical position of the mirror at displacement $x$ ...
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Change in temprature inferior needed for a mirage

I would like to calculate the change in temperature needed to get an inferior mirage effect. I want to derive $\frac{dT}{dz}$ and am given the Gladstone-Dale relation for the refractive index $n(z)-1=...
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Could you please suggest physics textbooks that discuss object velocity and image velocity pertaining to spherical and plane mirrors?

I have seen texts such as Zemansky's University Physics or Halliday Resnick's Physics (fundamentals and the older edition) etc. do not contain discussions on object velocity, image velocity (and their ...
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How we can distinguish objects separately, even if light rays from them are getting mixed up in space surrounding them?

I am a high school student and I am very confused in one thing in optics (ray optics) which I think is the most basic thing but didn't find any answer on internet, before I ask let me present one ...
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How to find the index of refraction of a glass cube with limited information?

This is a problem from my textbook that I've been struggling to solve: A ray of light from a laser pointer is incident on the "upper" surface of a glass cube at the angle of 70°. The ray ...
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Difference between Myopic Eye and Normal Eye with ray diagrams

So I have a problem where i am getting confused what happens when an object is placed in front of a myopic eye. Also I have another problem ie. why the image becomes blurry if it is formed beyond the ...
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How to determine aberrated wave front at exit pupil of a lens system using ray tracing?

I am working on building a very simple optical simulator for my workflow. I am stuck at a point where I am trying to simulate the impact of diffraction on a lens system that has geometric aberrations. ...
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How does paint of two color mix to form one of new color?

Suppose I take bit from two paints of different color and I smudge both on the same spot on a piece of paper, I will get a new color. What exactly is the physics behind this?
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Can a tall chain of mountains rise, apparently like the Sun, if watched from a plane approaching the mountains?

Assuming you are in a passenger plane that flies at 11000 meters having a speed of 1000 km/h, and pointing to a chain of mountains 5000 m tall, is it possible to see the chain rising from below the ...
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How does viewing through two eyes give us a sense of depth?

With ONE ray, your eye can never determine where the object is. Note that in your diagram, the eye can deduce the line along which the apparent image is, but to make a point, we need two lines! Who ...
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Thin layer of air between lenses in contact

consider the following case for thin lenses Case 1: lens between two different medium applying refraction through curved surfaces two times and subtracting - $$\frac{\mu_{oil}}v - \frac{\mu_{air}}u = ...
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What is the plane of a concave or convex mirror?

What is the plane of a concave or convex mirror? Is it along its principal axis or its area? I am convinced that the plane should be along the area of mirror but i am not sure about it. I tried to ...
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Maximum Intensity for Gaussian Beam

So I wanted to find out the maximum intensity for a Gaussian beam for a given aperture $D$ which is valid for near and far field, as a function of distance $z$, wavelength $\lambda$ and initial power $...
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Paradox of light passing through prism and glass slab

When white light passes through a glass slab, Newton's assumption is that a slab is made of 2 glass prisms placed in opposite direction, such that dispersion of both is cancelled out and a white light ...
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What exactly is "dense" in Optical Density?

My book states that: When passing from one medium to another, if light slows down, the second medium is said to be optically denser than the first medium, and if light speeds up, then the second ...
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Image Formation at a Spherical Refracting Surface

I was thinking about refraction at spherical refracting surfaces and what the required conditions be for the formation of a real or virtual image? I thought I could use this formula: \begin{equation*} ...
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Can we apply lens makers formula when medium on either side of the lens is different?

Lens maker's formula, which is $\frac{1}{f} = ({n_{liquid}{-1}}) [(\frac{1}{R}) - (\frac{-1}{R})]$. Can one apply lens makers formula when medium is different on both sides? If NO, why? Should we use ...
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How to understand the polarization rotator using a PBS, a quarter-wave plate, and a mirror?

In optics experiments, I often see the following optics configuration to rotate the polarization of an incident linearly-polarized laser beam. The final reflected beam has its polarization rotated by ...
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What is the significance of back focal length in a lens?

I work with C-mount cameras a lot and I've noticed that the lens' manufacturers often list back focal length (BFL) among optical specifications. (That's the distance between the lens' last optical ...
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How does a rainbow show all of its colours?

My question is tied closely to this one, asked a while back on the website. As far as my understanding goes, a rainbow is formed by sunlight undergoing two refractions and a reflection inside ...
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Time taken to travel by light a minimum or maximum?

I'm stuck on the following. We know that the path taken by light to travel between 2 points A and B corresponds to the path which minimises time elapsed. However, from relativity we also know light ...
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Finding Shift due to Refraction in Multiple Slabs when the object and viewer are in different medium [duplicate]

So, suppose we have three rectangular slabs each of varying refractive indices(R.I.) and thickness. We have a real point object to the left of the first slab and we have an observer to the right of ...
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Apparent Height as a Function of Distance

It's no secret that objects that are far away appear smaller than they actually are. Objects that are closer to us appear bigger than they are. Suppose I observe an object a few metres away from me. I ...
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Can we tell on which side of a lens an image appears?

Suppose I look through a single, thin, converging lens at an object on the opposite side. Depending on where the object is placed, the lens will either produce a real image on the side of the lens ...
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Development of the incident light transfer matrix on a multilayer structure

I am trying to read an article whose objective is to simulate a DBR (Distributed Bragg Reflector), however I do not understand very well why the matrix that represents the change that light undergoes ...
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How can conservation of etendue be explained geometrically?

I have tried to understand the principle of conservation of etendue, more specifically the limit on concentration, but when I try to reproduce it with this simulator it doesn't seem to work. The angle ...
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Sign Convention in Ray Optics

While solving questions on Refraction due to 2 spherical surfaces the sign of the image formed after the first refraction (here at '$A$') depends whether the image formed is towards left or right side ...
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Geometric optics explanation of lateral (transverse) chromatic aberration

The majority of pictures explaining lateral(transverse) chromatic aberration look like this Here the focal point for red light is shifted closer to the optical axis and the focal point for blue light ...
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How does the combination of lens create a sharper image?

There's a line in a book which states that the combination of lens helps create a sharper image, but I don't understand how. Does more magnification mean sharper image?
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