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Maximum angle of the refracted light beam

  • #1

Homework Statement


A light ray falls from the air (##n_a=1##) into the center of the upper surface of a long cilindrical glass tube with an index of refraction ##n_t=3/2##. The tube is submerged into water all the way to the upper edge and the waters index of refraction is ##n_w=4/3##. What is the maximum entry angle of the light ray at which it will only be traveling inside the glass?
a)##arcsine(1/6)##
b)##arcsin(\sqrt{15}/6)##
c)##arcsin(\sqrt{17}/6)##

Homework Equations


3. The Attempt at a Solution
I gues the snells law must be used ##n_1sin(x_1)=n_2sin(x_2)## but i dont get the problem. What is meant by maximum entry angle at which the beam will be traveling inside the cylinder only and how do i get that? I dont know my starting points. Could you hint?[/B]
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
haruspex
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dont get the problem
The light ray strikes the top of the cylinder at some angle. Refraction rotates it to a steeper angle within the glass. What might happen next?
 
  • #3
The light ray strikes the top of the cylinder at some angle. Refraction rotates it to a steeper angle within the glass. What might happen next?
I thought about it and i think the refracted ray inside the glass should come to the edge at a critical angle so that all of it gets reflected to the glass again and so on right?
 
  • #4
haruspex
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I thought about it and i think the refracted ray inside the glass should come to the edge at a critical angle so that all of it gets reflected to the glass again and so on right?
Yes, though I'm not sure what you mean by "and so on" there.
 

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