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Overview         (For age - group : Below 16 )

Light itself is not visible but in the presence of light other objects become visible. Objects which themselves emit light are called luminous bodies. Eg. Sun, burning candle, firefly. Through this animated topic learn about rectlinear propagation, point and extended source etc. Very useful for teachers and students.

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Basic Properties of light contains detailed animation on :
  • Learn about Luminous objects, extended and point sources
  • Rectilinear propgation of light and shadow formation
  • Umbra & penumbra formation due to extended and point source

Explanatory Notes section contains answers to perplexing questions :

  1. At microscopic level even the plane mirror has surface irregularities, so why does it reflect at all?
  2. Can we get colored shadows ?
  3. Objects owe their visibility to diffused reflection. Why do we say that?
  4. Why is it so difficult to read the characters written on a blackboard which reflects light?
  5. Are fireflies natural source of light?
  6. Why is it difficult to drive at night on a wet asphalt road?

Rectilinear propagation of light formation of umbra shadow point source
Light rays always travel in a straight line path.
Umbra is the part which is in complete darkness and receives no light from the source. A point source forms umbra
formation of umbra penumbra due to extended source formation of shadow
Umbra and penumbra are formed when an extended source is used
Shadows resemble shape, but not necessarily the size, of the object.
Details of the animation/ movie /software

-- Objects which allows the light to pass thorough them are called transparent bodies. Eg. Water, air, glass

-- Objects which do not allow the light to pass thorough them are called opaque bodies. Eg. Brick, book, metals, wood etc.

-- Objects which partially allow the light to pass through them and partially obstruct them are called translucent bodies. Eg. Brick, book, metals, wood etc.

-- Light rays always travel in a straight line path. This property of light is called the rectilinear propagation of light.

-- Shadows are direct consequence of rectilinear propagation of light and are formed when an object is placed in the path of light. Two parts of a shadow are umbra and penumbra

-- Umbra is the part which is in complete darkness and receives no light from the source.

-- Penumbra is the part which is in partial darkness and receives some light from the source.

-- Shadows resemble shape, but not necessarily the size, of the object.

-- Object create shadows of different shapes depending on its orientation or the orientation of the screen. For example, a cylinder may create a shadow that is a rectangle or a shadow that is a circle. The shape of the shadow will always be the same as the cross-section of the object that lies between the light source and the surface.

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Q & A
Q1: How formation of day and night suggest the rectilinear propagation of light? Rohan Mehra 4/11/2009
Q2: how does an marene animal emit light? aditya 4/11/2009
Q3: i want to get enimations of light because there are a lot of practicles involved in our studies Mian Mushtaq 29/8/2007
Ans: Hi Mushtaq, why don't you subscribe to the basic package at $2, this way you can easily view all animations
Q4: animation of all theory we have studied? mian mushtaq 27/8/2007
Ans: Hi Mushtaq, science is a vast subject, we are in the process of launching more animation, but covering science will take time, and yes we intend to cover virtually all subjects thoroughly
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