when light undergoes refraction , what happens to its frequency?

Asked by  | 17th Jun, 2008, 08:11: PM

Expert Answer:

Light refracts as it passes through a material. It's direction changes, but it still passes through. Light travels at a maximum speed -- the speed of light in a vacuum, but when traveling in anything else it slows down. Different materials slow the speed of passing light at different rates. This property of matter is called the refractive index. When refracting, light doesn't change it's frequency, but since it changes it's speed, it must also change it's wavelength (it gets squished or elongated). Frequency, wavelength, and speed are all related, so if one property changes, another must as well.

Answered by  | 17th Jun, 2008, 08:32: PM

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