Refraction Of Light Through At Plane And Curved


Welcome to the comprehensive course material on the topic of Refraction of Light Through a Plane and Curved Surfaces in Physics. This topic delves into the fascinating phenomenon of how light changes its direction as it travels from one medium to another, leading to various optical effects that we observe in our daily lives.

One of the key objectives of this topic is to help you interpret the laws of refraction, which govern how light bends when it passes through different mediums. When light travels from a less dense medium to a denser one, such as air to glass, it bends towards the normal line. Conversely, when light moves from a denser medium to a less dense one, like glass to air, it bends away from the normal line. Understanding these laws is crucial in explaining the behavior of light in different materials.

Another important aspect we will explore is the determination of the refractive index of glass and liquids using Snell’s law. The refractive index is a measure of how much a material can bend light, and this value can be calculated using the angles of incidence and refraction. By applying Snell’s law, we will be able to quantify the refractive index of various substances, providing insights into their optical properties.

We will also delve into the concept of real and apparent depth, as well as lateral displacement, which play a significant role in how objects appear when submerged in different mediums. Understanding the difference between the real depth of an object and its apparent depth when viewed through a refracting medium is crucial in optical applications such as the formation of images by lenses and mirrors.

Furthermore, the topic covers the critical angle and total internal reflection, where light undergoes reflection rather than refraction when it strikes a boundary at a certain angle. This phenomenon is utilized in various optical devices like periscopes, prisms, and optical fibers, enabling the transmission of light over long distances through total internal reflection.

Throughout this course material, you will also explore the practical applications of these concepts, such as using the lens formula and ray diagrams to solve optical problems, determining magnification, and calculating the refractive index of glass prisms using the minimum deviation formula. These applications will enhance your understanding of how light behaves when interacting with different optical elements.

In conclusion, by mastering the principles of refraction of light through plane and curved surfaces, you will gain a deeper insight into the behavior of light in various media and the applications of these phenomena in everyday devices and technologies.


  1. Determine the Magnification of an Image
  2. Use Lens Formula and Ray Diagrams to Solve Optical Numerical Problems
  3. Determine the Conditions Necessary for Total Internal Reflection
  4. Determine the Refractive Index of Glass and Liquid Using Snell’s Law
  5. Apply the Principles of Total Internal Reflection to the Formation of Mirage
  6. Determine the Refractive Index Using the Principle of Real and Apparent Depth
  7. Interpret the Laws of Refraction
  8. Examine the Use of Periscope, Prism, Binoculars, and Optical Fibre
  9. Calculate the Refractive Index of a Glass Prism Using the Minimum Deviation Formula

Lesson Note

Refraction is the phenomenon where light changes direction as it passes from one medium to another. This change in direction occurs because light travels at different speeds in different media. For example, light travels faster in air than in water or glass.

Lesson Evaluation

Congratulations on completing the lesson on Refraction Of Light Through At Plane And Curved. Now that youve explored the key concepts and ideas, its time to put your knowledge to the test. This section offers a variety of practice questions designed to reinforce your understanding and help you gauge your grasp of the material.

You will encounter a mix of question types, including multiple-choice questions, short answer questions, and essay questions. Each question is thoughtfully crafted to assess different aspects of your knowledge and critical thinking skills.

Use this evaluation section as an opportunity to reinforce your understanding of the topic and to identify any areas where you may need additional study. Don't be discouraged by any challenges you encounter; instead, view them as opportunities for growth and improvement.

  1. What is the phenomenon that explains the bending of light as it passes from one medium to another? A. Reflection B. Absorption C. Refraction D. Diffraction Answer: C. Refraction
  2. According to Snell's Law, what happens to the angle of refraction when light travels from a medium with a higher refractive index to a medium with a lower refractive index? A. It increases B. It decreases C. It remains the same D. It becomes zero Answer: A. It increases
  3. If the angle of incidence is 45 degrees and the refracted angle is 30 degrees when light travels from air to glass, what is the refractive index of glass? A. 1.2 B. 1.5 C. 2.0 D. 3.0 Answer: B. 1.5
  4. What is the critical angle for a medium with a refractive index of 1.5 when it reflects light back into the same medium? A. 30 degrees B. 45 degrees C. 60 degrees D. 90 degrees Answer: C. 60 degrees
  5. When a light ray passes through a glass prism, the minimum deviation occurs when the angle of incidence is equal to which angle? A. Angle of refraction B. Angle of emergence C. Angle of prism D. Critical angle Answer: D. Critical angle

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Past Questions

Wondering what past questions for this topic looks like? Here are a number of questions about Refraction Of Light Through At Plane And Curved from previous years

Question 1 Report

Which of the following curved surfaces will produce a real image? I. Concave mirror II. Convex mirror III. Diverging lens IV. Converging lens    

Question 1 Report

Given that SQ = 10cm and SP = 6cm, the refractive index of a block of glass shown above is

Question 1 Report

A ray of light experiences a minimum deviation when passing through an equilateral triangular glass prism. Calculate the angle of incidence of the ray. [Refractive index of glass = 1.5]

Practice a number of Refraction Of Light Through At Plane And Curved past questions