What is optics?

Optics is a branch belonging to the area of ​​physics that is mainly responsible for the study of light that is considered visible as well as its multiple behaviors and properties. In the same way, it is in charge of its study and its management for the various activities of the human being such as the development of instruments or equipment that use it or instruments to detect it.

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From the point of view of optics, light is defined as a band of electromagnetic-type emissions whose behavior is quite similar to other forms impossible to see by the human eye within the electromagnetic spectrum, such as radiation. infrared or ultraviolet.

Optics is considered a fairly broad field of research that has repercussions in one way or another in other areas such as astronomy, medicine, engineering, astrophysics, photography, among others. It is thanks to optics that today we have various equipment such as microscope, fiber optic systems , mirrors, laser, telescope, among others.

Types of optics

  • Physical optics

This optics is the one that studies light from a much broader perspective, it considers it as a wave that propagates through space. It is considered as the branch that is part of optics and that is considered one of the most faithful to its principles and reasoning based on physics, basing its studies according to previous knowledge.

In this way, we can say that physical optics directs its studies by evaluating physical phenomena such as disguise, polarization or interference. In the same way, it carries out studies that are considered predictive to evaluate the behavior of the speed of light in certain situations or means.

  • Geometric optics

This branch of study arises as a result of the geometric application of the phenomenological laws around refraction and reflection created by the Dutch scientist Willebrord Snel . According to this law, optics arises from the existence of a light beam, whose actions and reactions are described through the rules of geometry, in order to obtain formulas that are applied to lenses, diopters and mirrors.

Through geometric optics, various phenomena such as rainbows, prisms and the propagation of light can be studied.

  • Modern optics

This modern branch of optics was born as a result of quantum physics as well as the new fields of knowledge, which made possible various applications from the hand of engineering. In this sense, modern optics comprises a great variety of novel research fields, of which we can mention:

Examples of the application of optics in the various branches of study

  1. The laser mechanisms.
  2. Photoelectric cells.
  3. Metamaterial and LED lights.
  4. Digital image processing.
  5. Optoelectronics.
  6. Lighting engineering.
  7. Quantum optics.
  8. The physical study of the photon handled as a particle and a light wave at the same time.
  9. Atmospheric optics.

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