# Homework Help: Which makes a better prism?

1. Apr 19, 2007

Which makes a better prism??

1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

Hey guys, I'm helping my girlfriend once again, in physics 101!!! I'm not used to these "theory" questions...haha

Anyways, the question asks:Which would make a better prism, a diamond or glass?

I guess, I chose glass...because a diamond has a lot of little prisms inside of it(I think)...so, that would defeat the purpose, in my opinion) Also, a diamond distorts light....I don't know.....

Need some help, and need to be able to explain it to her, so she can understand it for the final. Make me understand it first, please!!

Thanks,

2. Relevant equations

3. The attempt at a solution

2. Apr 19, 2007

### limiss

you're thinking of diamond that is already cut and polished into a certain shape.
prisms use the refraction of light from one medium to the next. the better prism will have a higher refractive index..

3. Apr 19, 2007

So, according to you.......Diamond is a better prism(2.42) with glass being(1.52).....just found those off of the net.

4. Apr 19, 2007

### limiss

that's right

5. Apr 19, 2007

### denverdoc

and likely why diamonds cost a lot more than glass, as in where does all the flash and color come from?