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Homework Help: Optic question

  1. Jun 16, 2005 #1
    An empty flask containing some chalk pieces is placed inside a beaker full of water. When look horizontally, the flask appears to be larger than it really is. why?
    and when looked verticlaly down, the content of the flask shrinks, or even disapperas. why?
    Last edited: Jun 16, 2005
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 16, 2005 #2


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    Because as the light refracts out of the water and the contents are magified. When you look straight down the contesnts are not so much altered because the water is not as curved as looking horozontly at the curved part.
  4. Jun 16, 2005 #3
    hmm... sorry, but I still don't really get it =/
    can you explain again?
  5. Jun 16, 2005 #4


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    Science Advisor

    The sides of the flask are curved. When looked at from the side the flask and water acts like a magnifying lens. The top and bottom of the flask are flat so that doesn't happen when you look from above.
  6. Jun 16, 2005 #5
    ohhh... COOL
    I get it now. Thx a lot Ivy!
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