13.4 Color and Polarization
By: Desmond Mitchell and DaVon Curvin
❖Recognize how additive colors affect the
color of light.
❖Recognize how pigments affect the color
of reflected light.
❖Explain how linearly polarized light is
formed and detected.
Color appears when light reflects off an
➢ Green leaves appear green because
they show all wavelengths of light
Introduction to Color
❖ The color of an object appears different
depending on the lighting conditions.
➢ Like under a blacklight.
❖ The color of an object depends on
➢ wavelengths of light shine on the object
➢ which wavelengths are reflected.
❖ A surface that reflects all colors without absorbing any
of its colors shows white.
❖ A surface that absorbs all colors, reflecting none shows
All colors are caused by light and the way light affects
❖White light is a combination of
red, orange, yellow, green, blue and
❖When light hits an object
wavelengths are absorbed,and reflected.
Color and Light
❖ A prism breaks up light
into six colors.
❖ The beams of light can’t be
broken up, but can be put
❖ If you add two colors of pure light
together it creates two different colors
Color and Light
❖ The process of transforming unpolarized light into
❖ Light from most sources has electric and magnetic
fields that show at all angles
❖ Light is polarized when the all of the electromagnetic
waves are transmitted at the same angle.
Everything is aligned.
❖ The vibrations of the electric and magnetic fields are
parallel to each other.
¤Light can be polarized in two ways:
¤Transmission: allows only waves of a certain angle to
¤Like glare off of glass or shiny objects.
¤Reflection: most waves of light bouncing off of a surface are polarized
parallel to that surface
¤Like glare off of glass or other shiny objects.
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Polarization. (n.d.). Polarization. Retrieved October 29, 2013, from
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Molecular Expressions Microscopy Primer: Light and Color - Polarization of Light. (n.d.). Molecular Expressions Microscopy
Primer: Light and Color - Polarization of Light. Retrieved October 29, 2013, from
Color. (n.d.). HowStuffWorks. Retrieved October 29, 2013, from http://science.howstuffworks.com/color-info.htm
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