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Homework Help: Intro Physics Lab Interferometry Question (Fabry-Perot vs. Michelson)

  1. Dec 3, 2009 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    The Michelson interferometer can be used to measure extremely small distance scales. What is the smallest distance scale that can be measured? What uncertainty is associated with this?

    What is the smallest scale that can be measured by the Fabry-Perot interferometer? Which is better, the Michelson or the Fabry-Perot?

    2. Relevant equations

    λ=(2dm)/m. This is where λ is the wavelength of the laser being used in conjunction with the interferometer, m is the number of fringes that pass through the viewing area, and dm is the distance that the movable mirror in the interferometer is moved to get those fringes to pass through.

    3. The attempt at a solution

    My thoughts were that because both interferometers were set up on the same base with the same micrometer adjustment for the adjustable mirrors and are governed by the same equations, that they would be accurate for equally small distance scales.
  2. jcsd
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