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Light and Color

Use the links below to access specific internet content for Light and Color. The internet content is available at the GBS Physics web site as well as from other external sites. (Please notify the instructor of any broken links. Thanks!)

  • A discussion of the evidence which suggests that light exhibits wave-like behavior. See Lesson 1a of the Physics Classroom.
  • A detailed discussion of the phenomenon of polarization. See in Lesson 1d of the Physics Classroom.
  • A description of the electromagnetic spectrum accompanied by a detailed discussion of the visible light region. See in Lesson 2a of the Physics Classroom.
  • A detailed discussion of the selective absorption, reflection and transmission of light by various materials. The ultimate color appearance of objects is explained in terms of this phenomenon. See in Lesson 2c of the Physics Classroom.
  • A detailed discussion of primary colors of light and color addition principles. See in Lesson 2d of the Physics Classroom.
  • A detailed discussion of complementary colors, primary paints, and principles of color subtraction. See in Lesson 2e of the Physics Classroom.
  • An explanation of light diffraction and a discussion of how this phenomenon leads to blue skies and red sunsets. See in Lesson 2f of the Physics Classroom.


Offsite Links: 

  • The Physics 2000 site has a collection of pages pertaining to interference, polarization and color. The pages include several interactive portions, slick animations, and understandable and intriguing explanations. Visit pages on:
    || Polarization || Interference || Color ||
  • A series of Java applets and interactive Shockwave animations on color additiona nd subtraction. Alter the colors and intensities of light shining on Mickey Mouse and view objects through filters of varying pigments. Visit Color page.


  • A series of interactive pages on color mixing which do not require any elaborate web technologies. View objects in different colors of light and through different filters. Visit Color pages.


  • A collection of interactive Java applets which allow the visitor to explore color printing, color mixing, and color filters. Visit Color pages.


  • Text and interactive Java applets in which visitors explore interference of waves and Young's two slit interference experiment. Visit Interference pages.


  • Burn out those retinal cones with the Bird in a Cage demo at the Exploratorium Museum's web site. One more piece of evidence that physics is better than ... .


  • A historical perspective on the dual nature of light - particle vs. wave - is presented by the Nobel Foundation. Visit Dual Nature of Light page.




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E-mail: Tom Henderson || Last update: 8/26/2005