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How Rainbows Work

June 27, 2009

Past few days I’ve been studying optics, and light polarization.  I ended up stumbling across this lecture from MIT professor Walter Lewin.   It’s a really good lecture on how rainbows work.

Years ago, I remember one summer afternoon messing around with the hose, spraying it in the air and it generated a rainbow.  I found it fascinating, and would try to recreate it, day after day, but never had any luck.   Thanks to Dr. Lewin, I now see how it all works.

Even if you don’t understand Snell’s law, or refraction, you can still easily follow what he’s talking about just by the pictures he draws on the chalkboard.

Here is the video lecture, thanks to MIT university.

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