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Flat Mirror Ray Diagram

Flat Mirror Images

A Ray Diagram

By Dr. Jen

©2003-2012 4Physics®

Object (candle) in front of a shiny mirror.

1) Mirror with the arrow pointing to the shiny side.

Light ray from candle bottom bouncing off mirror like a ball.

Light ray path. Note that the angle of incidence equals the reflection angle. This is like bouncing a ball off of a hard, flat surface.

A second light ray from candle bottom.

Draw at least one more light ray.

The outgoing light rays do not intersect.

1) Outgoing light ray.
If the outgoing light rays cross, a real image is formed. That is not the case here.

Extend outgoing rays behind mirror where they do cross.

Extend the outgoing rays behind the mirror where they do meet. The image formed is a virtual image.

Draw the bottom of the virtual candle image.

Begin sketching out the rest of the virtual image.

Draw the middle of the virtual candle image.

Continue to sketch out the virtual image.

Draw the top of the virtual candle image.

Finish sketching out the virtual image.

The object and virtual image are of the same 
				   height and equidistant from the mirror.

1) Object.
Virtual image.

©2003-2012 4Physics®

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