This set is currently a work in progress. It will cover A Beka Book Physics Chapter 20: "The Refraction of Light" (pages 292-308).

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  • optical density

    term for a material's resistance to the transmission of light waves

    wavelength, speed

    When light enters a new medium, _____ and ___ change.


    The wavelength of light entering an optically denser medium must _____.


    The wavelength of light entering a medium of lower optical density must ______.


    term for the bending of light rays at the boundary between two media differing in optical density


    If two adjoining media have the same optical density, light is fully _____.

    absorbed, reflected

    If a new medium is nontransparent, light is partly ____ and partly _____.

    transmitted, reflected

    If both media are transparent, but have different optical densities, some light is ____ and some is ____.

    refractive index

    term for the index that relates the speed of light in a vacuum to the speed of light in a particular medium


    term an instrument that measures refractive index

    angle of incidence

    term for the angle between an incoming ray and the normal to the boundary

    angle of refraction

    term for the angle between a refracted ray and the normal to the boundary

    n1 sin θ1 = n2 sin θ2

    the first law of refraction

    Snell's law

    another term for the simple relationship expressed by the first law of refraction

    principle of reversibility

    principle that states that the path of a light ray subjected to reflection or refraction is traced in reverse by any ray coming along the path in the opposite reaction


    A ____ of water is due to the refraction of sunlight as it passes through hot, expanding air at ground level.

    critical angle

    When the angle of incidence reaches the ____ ___, the angle of refraction becomes 90 degrees.

    total internal reflection

    term for reflection as a result of an angle of incidence greater than the critical angle


    term for a bulging surface with the same curvature as the surface of a sphere


    term for a caved-in surface witht he same curvature ast he surface of a sphere


    term to describe a flat surface

    convergig lenses

    term for lenses that redirect parallel rayst oward a point of convergence

    double convex lenses

    the most important converging lenses

    diverging lenses

    term for lenses that spread parallel rays apart

    double concave lenses

    the most important diverging lenses


    Convergenging lenses have a _____ (positive, negative) focal length.


    Diverging lenses have a ____ (positive, negative) focal length.


    term for the perpendicular to a plane at the point of tangency

    principal axis

    term for the axis which is perpendicular to the lens plane

    principal focal point

    term for the point of convergence on the opposite side of the lens, to which rays are directed

    optical center

    term for the center of the lens

    focal length

    term for the distance from the optical center to the principal focal point

    secondary focal point

    another term for the focal length

    optical plane

    term for a plane perpendicular to the principal axis at the optical center

    parallel ray

    term for a ray that travels parallel to the principal axis, and then refracts through the mirror to the principal focal point

    central ray

    term for a ray that pases through the optical center of a lens without deviation on the far side

    focal ray

    term for a ray that aproaches the lens through the focal point

    real image

    term for actual light rays intersecting after refraction

    virtual image

    term for light rays extending from a lens in order to intersect

    1/f = (n-1) (1/r1 - 1/r2)

    the lensmaker equation

    1/f = 1/do + 1/di

    the thin lens equation

    myopia and hyperopia

    two defects of vision that can be corrected by wearing eyeglasses or contact lenses


    term for nearsightedness


    term for farsightedness

    P = 1/f

    the equation for the power of a lens


    the unit for the power of a lens

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