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Why water making white matirials become transparent?

  1. Sep 19, 2015 #1
    What the scientific explanation of the phenomenon that when you put water on white matirials such as paper or cloth they become partially transparent?
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 19, 2015 #2


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    The surface of the paper is rough, it scatters incident light. You see light both in reflection and transmission, but you do not see pictures, as the rays become disordered. Making it wet, the water fills in the holes among the paper particles and produces an even surface. The refractive index of the water is close to that of the paper, so the reflection between the water and the paper is minimised. The wet paper behaves like a transparent sheet.
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