Problem 34.9: Huygens' principle and refraction

Please wait for the animation to completely load.

The animation shows a wave front passing from one medium to another. Huygens' principle is applied at the boundary between the mediums. Restart.

  1. What happens to the wavelength for the refracted light wave when n2 > n1?
  2. What happens to the wavelength for the refracted light wave when n2 = n1?
  3. What happens to the wavelength for the refracted light wave when n2 < n1?
  4. What happens to the frequency of the refracted light wave in each of the given situations?

Problem authored by Morton Brydensholt and modified by Melissa Dancy.


Physlets were developed at Davidson College and converted from Java to JavaScript using the SwingJS system developed at St. Olaf College.

The OSP Network:
Open Source Physics - Tracker - EJS Modeling
Physlet Physics
Physlet Quantum Physics