Sunday, April 25, 2010

Reflective Pool: Natural Photo

Physics Picture: Natural Photo

            This picture has to do with reflection. The picture is a natural photo because I didn’t stage the picture or manipulate any of the objects involved with it. The frame of the arch is being reflected. The water in this case would be considered a flat surface, such as a plane mirror. With a plane mirror, a virtual image forms under the water’s surface. The light rays from the top of the arch to the water surface reflect at the same angle of incidence. According to the law of reflection, the angles of reflection and incidence are equal. If you extend that reflected ray below into the water, you will see an image that is identical to the object, which in this case is the archway. If you use the ray tracing method in a diagram, the image forms directly below the object. So the image is virtual and the same exact size as the actual object.


  1. What a great description of ray diagrams and the Law of Reflection. Is it my imagination? Or is that arch leaning back a little bit?

    This may be something I look at when we begin discussing reflection next week in class. Thanks for posting!

  2. What a beautiful picture and setting! I have a large pond behind my house, and I always like to take reflection pictures when the pond's surface is smooth.

    It's interesting to look a virtual image at an angle to the reflective surfaces since we usually position the object in front and parallel to the surface, producing a virtual, upright image. Your picture seems to violate that rule until you understand the nature of the light rays' positions. Keep up the good work!

  3. Excellent picture!
    The composition and the colors work really well. This is the type of picture that I will hang in my house!
    Your physics explanation is correct and well written.