This article is about the branch of physics. For the book by Sir Isaac Newton, see Opticks. Optics includes study of serway jewett physics for scientists and engineers solutions 7th pdf of light. Optics is the branch of physics which involves the behaviour and properties of light, including its interactions with matter and the construction of instruments that use or detect it.
Most optical phenomena can be accounted for using the classical electromagnetic description of light. Complete electromagnetic descriptions of light are, however, often difficult to apply in practice. Practical optics is usually done using simplified models. Some phenomena depend on the fact that light has both wave-like and particle-like properties. Explanation of these effects requires quantum mechanics. When considering light’s particle-like properties, the light is modelled as a collection of particles called “photons”. Optics began with the development of lenses by the ancient Egyptians and Mesopotamians.
Greek philosophy on optics broke down into two opposing theories on how vision worked, the “intromission theory” and the “emission theory”. Plato first articulated the emission theory, the idea that visual perception is accomplished by rays emitted by the eyes. He also commented on the parity reversal of mirrors in Timaeus. Reproduction of a page of Ibn Sahl’s manuscript showing his knowledge of the law of refraction. During the Middle Ages, Greek ideas about optics were resurrected and extended by writers in the Muslim world. Aristotelian and Euclidean ideas of optics, favouring the emission theory since it could better quantify optical phenomena.
The first wearable eyeglasses were invented in Italy around 1286. This was the start of the optical industry of grinding and polishing lenses for these “spectacles”, first in Venice and Florence in the thirteenth century, and later in the spectacle making centres in both the Netherlands and Germany. Optical theory progressed in the mid-17th century with treatises written by philosopher René Descartes, which explained a variety of optical phenomena including reflection and refraction by assuming that light was emitted by objects which produced it. Newtonian optics was generally accepted until the early 19th century when Thomas Young and Augustin-Jean Fresnel conducted experiments on the interference of light that firmly established light’s wave nature. The next development in optical theory came in 1899 when Max Planck correctly modelled blackbody radiation by assuming that the exchange of energy between light and matter only occurred in discrete amounts he called quanta.
Quantum optics gained practical importance with the inventions of the maser in 1953 and of the laser in 1960. In geometrical optics, light is considered to travel in straight lines, while in physical optics, light is considered as an electromagnetic wave. Geometrical optics can be viewed as an approximation of physical optics that applies when the wavelength of the light used is much smaller than the size of the optical elements in the system being modelled. Geometrical optics, or ray optics, describes the propagation of light in terms of “rays” which travel in straight lines, and whose paths are governed by the laws of reflection and refraction at interfaces between different media. When a ray of light hits the boundary between two transparent materials, it is divided into a reflected and a refracted ray.
The law of reflection says that the reflected ray lies in the plane of incidence, and the angle of reflection equals the angle of incidence. The laws of reflection and refraction can be derived from Fermat’s principle which states that the path taken between two points by a ray of light is the path that can be traversed in the least time. Geometric optics is often simplified by making the paraxial approximation, or “small angle approximation”. The mathematical behaviour then becomes linear, allowing optical components and systems to be described by simple matrices. Reflections can be divided into two types: specular reflection and diffuse reflection.
Specular reflection describes the gloss of surfaces such as mirrors, which reflect light in a simple, predictable way. In specular reflection, the direction of the reflected ray is determined by the angle the incident ray makes with the surface normal, a line perpendicular to the surface at the point where the ray hits. The incident and reflected rays and the normal lie in a single plane, and the angle between the reflected ray and the surface normal is the same as that between the incident ray and the normal. For flat mirrors, the law of reflection implies that images of objects are upright and the same distance behind the mirror as the objects are in front of the mirror.
Including its interactions with matter and the construction of instruments that use or detect it. Involving the modelling of both electric and magnetic fields of the light wave, which provides much of the eye’s optical power. The laws of reflection and refraction can be derived from Fermat’s principle which states that the path taken between two points by a ray of light is the path that can be traversed in the least time. Since the tip of the vector traces out a single line in the plane, fundamentals of Complex Analysis 3rd Ed. Some media have an index of refraction which varies gradually with position and, the propagation of light through a prism results in the light ray being deflected depending on the shape and orientation of the prism. 17th century with treatises written by philosopher René Descartes – it is possible for a wavefront to interfere with itself constructively or destructively at different locations producing bright and dark fringes in regular and predictable patterns.