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Finding the Index Of Refraction

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Abhinav Jain

Physics HL 2

Period 3

Mr. Lamb

28th October, 2009

Finding the Index Of Refraction

The following table shows the angles of incidence and the angles of refraction measured for a light

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Now, looking at Snell’s law where n1sinθ1 = n2sinθ2

n1 = 1.00 because that’s the assigned value for the index of refraction of light in the air.

Therefore, in order to find the index of

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Range of values for n2 = 0.81 – 1.61

Therefore uncertainty will be half the difference = 0.4

Therefore n2 = 1.1 ± 0.4

Now to calculate the speed of light in that medium, one needs to do the following.

n2 = c / v

  1. = 3 × 108 / v

v = 2.7 × 108 ms-1

Uncertainty: 0.4/1.1 × 2.7 × 108 = 9.8 × 107

Therefore v = 2.7 × 108 ms-1 ± 9.8 × 107 ms-1

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