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What is the accepted value of the refractive index of acrylic plastic?  

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vibee1611 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 23, 2012 at 6:52 PM via web

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What is the accepted value of the refractive index of acrylic plastic?

 

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cheezlikefishy | Student, Grade 11 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 24, 2012 at 5:20 PM (Answer #1)

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The accepted value is somewhere between 1.490 and 1.492. To be more specific, when the wavelength of light is 587.6 nm, the refractive index is 1.4914.


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pacorz | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Educator

Posted March 24, 2012 at 9:34 PM (Answer #2)

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Refractive index is a property of a substance that expresses how light bends when it passes through that substance, as a result of change in speed. Refractive index for any medium is calculated as:

n = velocity of light in a vacuum / velocity of light in medium

The refractive index is a way to express the optical density of a medium, and it is a useful property for identifying materials of various sorts, as well as for predicting the behavior of light interacting with the substance.

According to wikipedia, the accepted index of refraction for acrylic is 1.490-1.492. According to Cargille labs, which makes liquids with refractive indices that match those of various substances, the exact value for acrylic is 1.4917.

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