DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DAVID PARKER / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
A prism demonstrating refraction and reflection effects. A beam of white light strikes the prism, refracting onto the right hand face. At this face, some of the light is refracted again, exiting the prism and forming the spectrum. The spectrum is a result of the different amounts of refraction of the different wavelengths of light present. Some of the light is reflected by the face, exiting the prism from the closest face. As it leaves the prism, it is refracted in an opposite direction to when it entered, balancing out the effect and maintaining its white appearance.
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