Theory and Derivations: The two primary laws and equations associated with this experiment were The Law of Reflection and Snell’s Law. The Law of Reflection was mathematically determined in experiment A as represented in Figure 1. The equation was determined to be the equation depicted below in equation 1. Equation 1. As depicted in figure 1 and equation 1, a ray of light reaching a reflective or semi- reflective interface at an angle of , will result in a reflection of that ray of light at an angel of .
Figure 1. Snell’s Law is represented below as Equation 2. This equation can be used to solve for the angle of refraction or the value of a respective interface’s index of refraction. The value for is equal to the respective interface’s index of refraction while the value for is equal to the respective refraction angle of the ray passing through an interface. Snell’s Law was explored in experiment D. as depicted in Figure 2. Equation 2. As depicted in figure 2, a ray of light is refracted at a specific angle once in contact with an interface. This angle is dependent of the respective index of refraction value for the substance of which the ray of light passes through. Figure 2.
Procedure: For experiment A, first a ray of light was emitted from a light source, towards a mirror. Using a protractor, 10 separate angles were analyzed along with the respective angle of reflection. The Law of Reflection was then derived based on these results. Then, group members stood in front of a plane mirror observing the image at multiple distances in order to determine the relationship between the mirror and the amount of one’s self that was visible in the mirror image. For experiment B, first, a dowel rod was placed 20cm from a plane mirror and the mirror image was observed from different vantage points. Next, group members ‘merged’ faces by facing each other face-to-face with a plane mirror in between; making sure that the other member’s forehead aligned with the mirror image. A third group member then observed the merged face image at different vantage points.
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