Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Applications of Total Internal Reflection

1. Diamonds sparkling

The brilliance of diamond is due to total internal reflection. The critical angle of light traveling from diamond to air is 24.4 degrees.The ray of light entering the diamond (incident angle) fall at angle greater than 24.4 degrees. This results in multiple, total internal reflections at various angles and remains within the diamond. Hence diamond sparkles.

2. Endoscope

Endoscopes use fiber optics technique. A patient can swallow a tube containing a fine glass fiber through which a doctor can examine the internal stomach parts and hence unnecessary surgeries can be avoided. This is so as the optic fibres uses the principles of total internal reflection to transmit an image that can be inspected visually outside the body.

Advantage of using total internal reflection in endoscopes (or medical purposes):

- No operation will be needed to observe the internal organs of a patients

- Tumors in the body can be killed by using this theory. No operation is needed as the optical fibre rays can be reflected and aimed at the tumor for it to be killed.

Disadvantages of using total internal reflection in endoscopes:

- The equipment needed are expensive

- Total internal reflection might not occur when the angle of incidence is changed, thus causing the equipment unusable.

Done By:

- Kang Yan

- Bing Jue

- Jun Peng

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