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Homework Help: Internal Reflection

  1. Jan 22, 2009 #1
    Consider two adjacent transparent media. The speed of light through Medium 1 is v1, and the speed of light through Medium 2 is v2. If v1<v2, then total internal reflection will occur at the interface between these media if a beam of light is?



    I said incident in Medium 1 and stikes the interface at an angle of incedence greater than arcsin (v2/v1). Is this correct?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 22, 2009 #2
    If v2 > v1 then v2/v1 is greater than 1. Does taking the arcsine of a number greater than 1 make sense? Use Snell's Law and n = c/v to derive the condition for total internal reflection.
     
  4. Jan 22, 2009 #3
    Okay... that was dumb of me.... so if I take n1=c/v1 and n2=c/v2, then i have arcsine(v1/v2) when i take n2/n1 right?
     
  5. Jan 22, 2009 #4
    That's correct.
     
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