The change in direction (or bending) of light when it passesfrom one medium to another is called
angle of incidence
, i, is the angle between the incident rayand the normal.
The angle of refraction, r, is the angle between the refracted rayand the normal.
Laws of Refraction
1.The incident ray, the refracted ray and the normal at the point of incidence all lie on the same plane.2.For two given media, the ratio sin i/sin r is a constant,where I is the angle of incidence and r is the angle of refraction.
The refractive index, n, of a medium may also be defined as theratio of the speed of light in a vacuum to the speed of light in thatmedium.
Total internal refraction
is defined as the angle of incidence in theoptically denser medium for which the angle of refraction in theoptically less dense medium is 90
Conditions for total internal refraction:
1.The light ray must travel from an optically denser mediumtowards an optically less dense medium.2.The angle of incidence must be greater than the criticalangle.
Applications for total internal refraction: periscope, binoculars, Single Lens Reflex Camera,
Fibre Optics(“light pipes”)
-Uses total internal reflection to transmit light from one place to another.
particularly useful when one wishes to view an image produced at inaccessible locationse.g. a doctor uses an endoscope which works on this principle, to examine the internal organsof his patients.Fibre optics is seeing higher usage in telecommunications, as:-optical fibres can carry a much higher volume of telephone calls, computer data or television pictures than electrical wires.-much thinner and lighter -being made of glass, optical fibre cables are much cheaper than metals such as copper.-they allow high quality transmission of information over long distances, with negligible signalloss.