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Homework Help: Image formed by a mirror - What is asked?

  1. Oct 22, 2013 #1
    1. Make a sketch copy of the diagram below and indicate clearly the position and nature of the image formed by the mirror. Draw rays corresponding to light coming from the open circle, and mark any relevant angles.

    You can see the picture they mean in the attachment.

    3. My attempt at the solution is also in the attachment. The problem is, I've never really been exposed to optics, and it is a part of an entrance exam I'm participating in, so I looked up some google images of 'mirror image' and I just saw that the virtual image is usually mirrored w.r.t. the 'mirror line', and that you can draw a line from the virtual image to the eye. That's all I've done, but the question itself confuses me:

    - 'nature of the image' : What do they mean by 'nature' of an image?
    - 'draw rays corresponding to light coming from the open circle': I don't understand anything about this sentence.
    - Mark any relevant angles - What is there to mark? Aren't all the angles basically equal?

    Attached Files:

  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 22, 2013 #2
    I think they want you to draw rays coming from the o in the middle of the object/arrow. The rays should reflect off the mirror on fall into the eye (the arc in between the v shape).
  4. Oct 22, 2013 #3
    So how many lines would you have to draw? I'm guessing 3, one to the top of the eye, one to the dot and one to the bottom, but that seems so random.
  5. Oct 22, 2013 #4
    That sounds like a good idea.
  6. Oct 22, 2013 #5
    But what do they mean by 'mark the angles'. How can you know how big the angles actually are?
  7. Oct 22, 2013 #6
    It might be that they just want you to show that the incident and reflection angles are the same. There are also several properties of the image that might be important - is it real or virtual, upright or inverted and how do it compare sizewise to the object.
  8. Oct 22, 2013 #7
    Ok, thanks for the help
    Last edited: Oct 22, 2013
  9. Oct 22, 2013 #8
    You should also indicate positionwise that it is the the same distance behind the mirror as it is in front. Yes, it is virtual because the rays do not actually pass throught the image behind the mirror. There is no image "on" the mirror? Good, you noticed that it is swopped around. Yes only when the mirror is curved will the size change - the relationship between the rays are then altered once reflected. Signing off now here in South Africa.
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