What Does Refractive Index Mean?


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Arlene Fernandes Profile
Refractive index is another term that is given to the noun index of refraction. It may be defined as "The ratio of the speed of light in a vacuum to the speed of light in a medium under consideration".

It is usually represented by the symbol n. In other words, the refractive index of a given material may be defined as "the factor by which the phase velocity of electromagnetic emission is slowed in that substance, relative to its swiftness in a vacuum."

The term refraction is a noun that is usually used in reference to the turning or bending of waves, (a sound or light wave, for instance) as it passes through from one medium to another medium which has a different optical density.

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