• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Investigate how the angle of refraction is affected by different inputs of the angle of incidence through a glass block.

Extracts from this document...


Daniella Mayes                                                                                     10 BD - 1

Physics Investigation

I am going to investigate how the angle of refraction is affected by different inputs of the angle of incidence through a glass block.

Background Information:

When light goes from air to another transport material it slows down – only slightly, but enough to make it change direction or refract.

Refraction can be explained using wave theory. As the light waves hit the boundary with the second material, they slow down. This causes a change of direction towards the “normal” as the light waves are “bunched up” (a shorter wavelength). When light passes back out into air, the refraction is away from the normal, because the light speeds up.

Rays of light travelling from air into glass are bent or refracted towards the normal. Rays of light travelling from glass into air are refracted away from the normal. In other words the angle of refraction is less than the angle of incidence.

...read more.


Refractive index =      1

                        sine C (critical angle)


I am going to measure the angle of refracted light that is shone through a glass block. I am going to vary the angle of incidence, for example 10°, 20°, 30°etc. I will keep the same shape of glass block (rectangular) and the same material (glass). I am also going to keep the same light source (ray box) and the same distance from the ray box to the glass block. Using Snell’s law I am going to find the refractive index.


I predict that when the angle of incidence increases the refracted angle will also increase. I predict this due to the fact that because glass has a higher density than air the ray of light will be refracted away from the normal and both angles will increase. As the angle of incidence increases, so will the angle of refraction.


...read more.










































The graph loosely supports my prediction, which was as you increase the angle of incidence you increase the angle of refraction. It did show this but it didn't show that as you double the angle of incidence you double the angle of refraction. It showed that when angle I is 40 degrees angle r is 19 degrees and when angle I is 80 degrees angle r is 30 degrees this means that my prediction was wrong but not totally because if you use Snell's law it works. Snell found that if you take the sine of angle I and divide it by the sine of angle r you get the refractive index which should be the same for every angle for that material, in my case, glass.

Science Investigation

...read more.

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Waves section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Here's what a teacher thought of this essay

3 star(s)

This is a well structured and well written report, although it has large gaps.
1. The graph and evaluation are missing.
2. There is a large gap in the middle of the report.
3. The sources of information need to be referenced.

Marked by teacher Luke Smithen 13/08/2013

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Waves essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    An investigation into the factors affecting the frequency of a standing wave

    4 star(s)

    When the correct frequency was found, the wire began to resonate quite violently, and sometimes produced a humming noise as expected. However, on one result I suspected that one of the pieces of paper we had placed under the wire was interfering with the wire's vibrating, creating another node, and

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Investigation:To find the refractive index of cooking oil.

    4 star(s)

    hold the substances, must have be used throughout the whole experiment because other trays which look the same may have a varied density. This would ultimately mean that the angle of refraction would be different to the expected result. This is because the light would spend longer travelling through the plastic of the tray before reaching the liquid inside.

  1. Peer reviewed

    Mobile Phone case study

    4 star(s)

    Tech-FAQ.com also has an article on how mobile phones are safe. It bullet points different facts that support that mobile phones are safe. For example; "Regarding brain tumor incidence, researchers admit that the evidence still is not clear as to whether tumours or cancer are directly related to mobile phone

  2. To investigate how the depth of the water will effect the speed of a ...

    This equation basically shows that the speed of the wave will increase as the depth of the water increases. This is because in shallow water the waves on the surface are bigger than the depth of the water and so they hit the bottom of the tray and so it cannot travel properly.

  1. Find a relationship between the angles of incidence and the angles of refraction by ...

    Semi-circular perspex * Light box * Protractor * Power supply Reasons for choosing apparatus: * Semi-circular perspex: only one point of refraction, and is more denser than air, so that refraction will be able to be seen * Colour of light: Normal light from the light box, so that the

  2. Deviation of Light by a Prism.

    Below is a table of values that I collected for both the light method and the sighting pin method. The actual drawings of these results can be seen on the next few pages. Angle of Incidence +-0.5� Angle of Refraction +-0.5� Refractive Index +-0.4% (Max error)

  1. Investigating the speed of travelling waves in water.

    The sides of the tray slightly slope outwards. This is a slight disadvantage, as it may affect the accuracy of the results. Apparatus Plastic apparatus tray Cold tap water Stop clock Setsquare Ruler A book Marker Pen Set-up Method Fill an apparatus tray with 0.5cm of water.

  2. Investigation Into How the Depth of Water Affects the Speed of a Wave.

    Planning Aim: The aim of this experiment is to gain results by dropping a water container from different heights (amplitude) to see which height can get the fastest wave. Method: As the container is dropped I will start the stopwatch.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work