Ch 17: Optics & Light

About This Chapter

Enhance your understanding of light reflection and refraction, including related laws and their applications You can use these video and text lessons to prepare for an exam or as a supplement to what you are already learning in class.

Optics & Light - Chapter Summary

In this chapter, you'll review the reflection and refraction of light with different types of lenses, how mirrors work and the laws of reflection and refraction. Explanations and term definitions are supported by examples and illustrations to make learning these complex concepts easy and engaging.

As you move through the chapter, you'll learn about different types of microscopes, telescopes and mirrors. You'll also review how to use specific equations regarding light patterns. Upon completion of this chapter, you should be better able to:

  • Explain the law of reflection of light
  • Note the difference between plane and spherical mirrors
  • Discuss why, in some instances, light that should be reflected is refracted instead
  • Describe how to fix optical aberrations
  • Define scattering and polarization by reflection
  • Detail how the lens of the eye functions
  • List different types of telescopes and microscopes
  • Identify applications of light and optics
  • Discuss how Huygens' principle proves the laws of reflection and refraction
  • Provide details about single- and double-slit diffraction

All lessons are easily accessible on any device and are taught by experienced instructors. Video and text transcripts can be printed and used as a quick reference tool. Take self-assessment quizzes to measure the depth of your knowledge and to identify any topics you might be struggling with. Your Dashboard makes it easy to track your progress through this chapter.

12 Lessons in Chapter 17: Optics & Light
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
What is the Law of Reflection of Light? - Definition & Overview

1. What is the Law of Reflection of Light? - Definition & Overview

In this lesson you will learn about the concept of reflection, including one of the simplest laws of physics, the law of reflection. You will learn about the main features of the law of reflection as well as some application and facts about reflection in general.

Mirrors: Difference Between Plane & Spherical

2. Mirrors: Difference Between Plane & Spherical

After watching this lesson, you will be able to explain what a mirror is and how plane mirrors and spherical mirrors are different, including the images they produce. A short quiz will follow.

Frustrated Total Internal Reflection

3. 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.

How the Combination of Lenses Improves Optical Aberration

4. How the Combination of Lenses Improves Optical Aberration

Even the best simple lenses can come with some basic problems. In this lesson, we'll examine the issue of optical aberrations and see how we can fix them with more complex lenses.

What is Scattering? - Definition & Examples

5. What is Scattering? - Definition & Examples

In physics, it's rare for wave energy to travel in a completely straight line. Several processes can occur that make the wave depart from its path. This lesson will cover one of those processes, scattering, and give a few examples of it in action.

Lens of the Eye: Definition & Function

6. Lens of the Eye: Definition & Function

The lens of the eye focuses light and allows you to see. In this lesson, you will learn what the lens is made of and how it changes shape so that you can have clear vision.

Types of Telescopes: Radio, Reflecting & Refracting Telescopes

7. Types of Telescopes: Radio, Reflecting & Refracting Telescopes

Learn about the different types of telescopes that astronomers use: X-ray, radio, gamma ray, reflecting and refracting. Learn what the differences are between them and what different things they show us about the universe.

Types of Microscopes: Electron, Light & Fluorescence

8. Types of Microscopes: Electron, Light & Fluorescence

Microscopes are used to visualize tiny objects and structures that cannot be seen with the naked eye. In this lesson, learn how light, fluorescence, and electron microscopes work and how they are used in scientific and medical research.

Light & Optics: Real-World Applications

9. Light & Optics: Real-World Applications

Light is all around us but how do we actually use it in our daily lives? This lesson will provide you with a brief overview of some real-world applications of light and optics, many of which may surprise you!

Double-slit Diffraction: Interference Pattern & Equations

10. Double-slit Diffraction: Interference Pattern & Equations

This lesson explores double-slit diffraction, including the significance of Young's double slit experiment and how the diffraction pattern forms. You will also learn to use equations to calculate the positions of minima and maxima in the pattern.

Single-slit Diffraction: Interference Pattern & Equations

11. 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.

Polarization by Reflection & Brewster's Law

12. Polarization by Reflection & Brewster's Law

After watching this lesson, you will be able to explain what polarization by reflection is, give a few examples of polarization in everyday life, explain Brewster's Law descriptively and use the equation to solve problems. A short quiz will follow.

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

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