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Sanjoy Laishram , asked a question


Subject: Physics , asked on 23/2/15

derivation of lens maker formula of thin lens


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Sanjeev A.R From Kendriya Vidyalaya, added an answer, on 15/2/12


133 helpful votes in Physics

Refraction by a Lens

Figure (a)

Figure (b)

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Figure (c)
The above gure shows the image formation by a convex lens.
Assumptions made in the derivation:
The lens is thin so that distances measured from the poles of its surfaces can be taken as equal to the distances from the
optical centre of the lens.
Theaperture of the lens is small.
The object consists only of a point lying on the principle axis of the lens.
The incident ray and refracted ray make small angles with the principle axis of the lens.
A convex lens is made up of two convex spherical refracting surfaces.
The rst refracting surface forms image I of the object O [ gure (b)].
Image I1acts as virtual object for the second surface that forms the image at I [ gure (c)]. Applying the equation for spherical
refracting surface to the rst interface ABC, we obtain

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A similar procedure applied to the second interface ADC gives

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For a thin lens, BI1= DI1


Adding equations (i) and (ii), we obtain

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The point where image of an object placed at in nity is formed is called the focus(F) of the lens and the distancefgives its focal
length. A lens has two foci,Fand

, on either side of it by the sign convention.


BC1=R 1
CD2= R 2
Therefore,equation (iv) can be written as

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Equation (v) is known as the lens makers formula.


From equations (iii) and (iv), we obtain

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As B and D bothare close to the optical centre of the lens,


BO = u, DI = +v, we obtain

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Equation (vii) is known as thin lens formula.


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