Copyright

Ch 20: Light as an Electromagnetic Wave

About This Chapter

Boost your knowledge of the properties and equations of light as it behaves as an electromagnetic wave. Use these lessons and quizzes as a flexible, mobile way to prepare for an upcoming exam or homework assignment.

Light as an Electromagnetic Wave - Chapter Summary

Our instructors will present the definition of electromagnetic waves and their many sources. You will learn about the seven major regions of waves on the electromagnetic spectrum, as well as the definition of light and ways that it is produced by humans. Malus's Law and the polarization of light will also be presented.

Your study will continue with a discussion of light refraction and dispersion and how it relates to Snell's Law. You'll review the processes of frustrated total internal reflection and single-slit diffraction. An explanation of what makes up a double slit experiment and what it tells us is also included. After you have reviewed this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Define the major trends and categories within the electromagnetic wave spectrum
  • Describe the seven regions of the electromagnetic spectrum
  • Identify how humans are able to produce light
  • Use Malus's Law to solve problems
  • Outline light refraction using Snell's Law
  • Detail the concept of frustrated total internal reflection
  • Solve problems using the single-slit diffraction equation
  • Explain how a double slit experiment works

Our mobile-friendly lessons are designed by professional instructors to ensure your learning experience is easy and interesting. Before or after you've viewed the video lessons, take the quiz to test how well you understand the material. Each lesson is accompanied by a printable transcript so you can review the material offline at any time. The lessons and quizzes are available for you to review at your convenience 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

10 Lessons in Chapter 20: Light as an Electromagnetic Wave
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Electromagnetic Waves: Definition, Sources & Properties

1. Electromagnetic Waves: Definition, Sources & Properties

In this lesson, learn the basics of electromagnetic waves and how they make up the electromagnetic spectrum. We will explore the major trends and categories within the spectrum, as well as the various sources of electromagnetic waves.

The 7 Major Regions of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

2. The 7 Major Regions of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

This lesson will walk you through each of the major regions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Explore the unique characteristics of X-rays, microwaves, radio waves, UV rays, infrared, gamma rays, and of course, visible light.

What is Light?

3. What is Light?

This lesson will define and describe what light is from both technical and more common-use perspectives, discuss what the different kinds of light are, and explain why it's called radiation.

Ways to Produce Light

4. Ways to Produce Light

This lesson will discuss the various ways that we are able to produce light, from campfires to LED bulbs, and how this ability has shaped human society. Take a quiz to test your knowledge.

Polarization of Light & Malus's Law

5. Polarization of Light & Malus's Law

After watching this video, you will be able to explain what polarization of light is, list a number of examples of how polarization of light is used, state Malus's Law, and use it to solve problems involving the intensity of light through a polarizer.

Refraction & Dispersion: Definition, Snell's Law & Index of Refraction

6. Refraction & Dispersion: Definition, Snell's Law & Index of Refraction

Refraction explains why light bends in water. But, did you know that mathematical laws determine exactly how light waves are bent? In this lesson, we'll explore the mechanics of wave refraction, including Snell's Law and the index of refraction.

What is Snell's Law?

7. What is Snell's Law?

What happens when light travels from one medium to another, like from air to water? The answer can be described by Snell's Law, which is the main focus of this lesson.

Frustrated Total Internal Reflection

8. Frustrated Total Internal Reflection

Under certain conditions light that should be reflected in total internal reflection can be refracted instead. This process is known as frustrated total internal reflection, and in this lesson we will learn how it works.

Single-slit Diffraction: Interference Pattern & Equations

9. Single-slit Diffraction: Interference Pattern & Equations

After watching this lesson, you will be able to explain what single-slit diffraction is, describe and picture the pattern that it creates on a distant screen and use the equation of single-slit diffraction to solve problems. A short quiz will follow.

Double Slit Experiment: Explanation & Equation

10. Double Slit Experiment: Explanation & Equation

The double slit experiment is an idealized laboratory scenario that produces a wave interference pattern. In this article, we will discuss the basic setup of a double slit experiment and explain how the setup produces an interference pattern.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
Not Taken
Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 160 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Support