Abstract

We consider image motion in the visual field of an observer moving through a rigid environment under mirage conditions, in which light rays follow curved trajectories as a result of a nonuniform atmospheric refractive index. We show that, under these conditions, the translation motion field does not conform to the simple pattern observed in the absence of refraction; instead it depends on the transfer characteristic of the mirage. An interesting finding is that if the mirage has a transfer characteristic that folds, as occurs for example in the desert mirage, the motion field will, in general, be infinite at the fold point.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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