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Mirrors reflecting images infinitely

  1. Jun 23, 2013 #1
    Hi Everyone,

    This is a physics problem but also an everyday home one I'm trying to resolve. In our bathroom, we have two mirrors on opposite walls (parallel walls)... because of this, they reflect images of the person between them infinitely many times - it's actually quite a bit nauseating to someone in the household. Besides the obvious solution of removing one of the mirrors, is there a way to prevent this infinite effect?

    For example, slightly changing the angle of a mirror (although it may still reflect in some angles probably?) or maybe changing one of the mirrors to a mirror that is a window on one side and a mirror on the other (would light get trapped?)... or perhaps adding a mirror like that in front of one of the mirrors... Not really sure what can be done. The house is in its final stages of construction so things can be changed slightly.

    Thanks!
    Adrian
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 23, 2013 #2

    mfb

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    An angle between the mirrors will limit the amount of images one can see.

    Remove one of the mirrors? Make them less reflective?

    That does not exist. You can get that illusion with a semi-transparent mirror if one side of the mirror is much brighter than the other side, but it is just an illusion.
     
  4. Jun 24, 2013 #3

    CWatters

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    Just remove one of the mirrors. Changing the angle of one slightly will have limited effect on the number of images but may make the effect appear to move around more when the person moves.
     
  5. Jun 24, 2013 #4
    I recall an episode of the original Batman TV show from the 60's in which Batman suspects he is being observered by someone behind a one-way mirror...

    Batman picks up a small mirror and holds it up to the one-way mirror, and is able to see the guy behind the glass of the one-way mirror in the reflection of the little mirror's image in the one-way mirror.
     
  6. Jun 24, 2013 #5

    mfb

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    I did not analyze it in detail, but I doubt this would work.
     
  7. Jun 24, 2013 #6

    sophiecentaur

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    An infinite bathroom??? A planner's nightmare. Would you need to pay virtual rates on the extra virtual floor area?
     
  8. Jun 24, 2013 #7

    sophiecentaur

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    You must be correct. The image in his mirror would be the same as what he would see, looking directly, I reckon.
    The only way would be for him to go up close to the mirror and use his cape over his head to exclude light from the room he's in (like a victorian photographer). Then the observer's side would be brighter and the caped crusader could see. But not very good cinema, perhaps.
     
  9. Jun 24, 2013 #8
    Thanks for the replies... sounds like I'm basically out of luck... will probably have to remove a mirror or just live with the infinite reflections!
     
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