Steve Beeson, Arizona State University

Human beings have always been visual animals. For the majority of our existence, we've relied mostly on our sight to find food and shelter. And now, with the rapid development of computers, multimedia, and cyberspace, our vision is becoming increasingly more important for interaction with our immediate environment and our world. The prime vehicle of this interaction is light. Yet do we really know what "light" is? For most of us, it is simply what we turn on to see at night. The purpose of this module is to delve a little deeper into the concept of light, to understand a little more than just that which allows us to "see". We'll explore how light reflects and refracts; how we can use lenses and mirrors to play tricks on nature; how color allows us to create masterpieces of art; and how nature creates her own masterpieces of light. On our journey, hopefully we'll come to understand more about the role of light and optics in our universe.

Light, Reflection, and Refraction
Lenses, Mirrors, and Prisms
Color and the Spectrum
Optics in Nature
Supplementary Modules

Optics Discovery Kit by the Optical Society of America

Light & Optics
PiN Homepage

Copyright &copy1995 Steve Beeson, Department of Physics and Astronomy, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287