How does light reflect? I am going to speculate below and maybe one of you all who have more experience in Physics can tell me if I am correct or give me a reference. I have an undergraduate degree in EE so you can talk to me as someone with a little college physics but (obviously by what I am going to write) not a whole lot. Here goes: A photon flies through space and is absorbed by an atom. This knocks a electron to a higher energy level. When the electron drops back it emits a photon at the frequency of the energy gap. The photons go off in all directions but it appears that the outgoing light ray reflects at the same angle as the incoming ray because of destructive interference of the out of phase rays. The energy in the gab determines the color (frequency). However, an intense enough light can cause electrons to jump to higher gaps causing the result to look white. How do mirrors work? Is it related to the large numbers of free electrons in the metal soup? And transparent medium like glass, do the photons go straight through or are they absorbed and retransmitted? This is not for any class or anything just curiosity.