Abstract

Some laboratory demonstrations on atmospheric optics are presented. The focus is on dispersion effects in mirages, lateral mirages, and inferior mirages produced with small hot plates. We also show a demonstration of the upper-tangent-arc halo, produced with a hexagonal prism, rotating about two axes.

© 2003 Optical Society of America

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References

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  1. M. Vollmer, R. Tammer, “Laboratory experiments in atmospheric optics,” Appl. Opt. 37, 1557–1568 (1998).
    [CrossRef]
  2. R. Greenler, “Laboratory simulation of inferior and superior mirages,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 4, 589–590 (1987).
    [CrossRef]
  3. R. Greenler, The Mirage, the Discovery of Greenland and the Green Flash, educational video available from Blue Sky Associates, http://www.blueskyassociates.com .
  4. C. Tape, “Aquarium, Computer, and Alaska Range Mirages,” Phys. Teacher 38, 308–311 (2000).
    [CrossRef]
  5. P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
    [CrossRef]
  6. R. Greenler, Rainbows, Halos, and Glories (Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK, 1980).
  7. J. M. Pernter, F. M. Exner, Meteorologische Optik, 2nd ed. (W. Braumüller, Vienna, 1922).
  8. Fata Morgana—Naturwunder und Zauberspuk, television film produced by M. Engler, Sierichstrasse 49, 22301 Hamburg, Germany; first broadcast 2001 by the French-German television program ARTE.
  9. Fata Morganen—Zauberspiegel am Horizont, television film produced by M. Engler, Sierichstrasse 49, 22301 Hamburg, Germany; first broadcast 1996 by the French-German television program ARTE.
  10. R. W. Wood, “Some experiments on artificial mirages and tornadoes,” Philos. Mag. 47, 349–353 (1899).
  11. H. Möller, W. B. Schneider, “Ein überraschender Versuch zum Thema Fata Morgana: der weggeblasene Lichtstrahl,” Physik in der Schule 32, 63–64 (1994).
  12. W. Tape, Atmospheric Halos, Vol. 64 of Antarctic Research Series (American Geophysical Union, Washington, D.C., 1994).
    [CrossRef]
  13. R. Greenler, Sunlight and Ice Crystals in the Skies of Antarctica, educational video available from Blue Sky Associates, http://www.blueskyassociates.com .

2000 (1)

C. Tape, “Aquarium, Computer, and Alaska Range Mirages,” Phys. Teacher 38, 308–311 (2000).
[CrossRef]

1998 (1)

1994 (1)

H. Möller, W. B. Schneider, “Ein überraschender Versuch zum Thema Fata Morgana: der weggeblasene Lichtstrahl,” Physik in der Schule 32, 63–64 (1994).

1989 (1)

P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
[CrossRef]

1987 (1)

1899 (1)

R. W. Wood, “Some experiments on artificial mirages and tornadoes,” Philos. Mag. 47, 349–353 (1899).

Barker, P. R.

P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
[CrossRef]

Crofts, P. R. M.

P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
[CrossRef]

Exner, F. M.

J. M. Pernter, F. M. Exner, Meteorologische Optik, 2nd ed. (W. Braumüller, Vienna, 1922).

Gal, M.

P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
[CrossRef]

Greenler, R.

R. Greenler, “Laboratory simulation of inferior and superior mirages,” J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 4, 589–590 (1987).
[CrossRef]

R. Greenler, Rainbows, Halos, and Glories (Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK, 1980).

Möller, H.

H. Möller, W. B. Schneider, “Ein überraschender Versuch zum Thema Fata Morgana: der weggeblasene Lichtstrahl,” Physik in der Schule 32, 63–64 (1994).

Pernter, J. M.

J. M. Pernter, F. M. Exner, Meteorologische Optik, 2nd ed. (W. Braumüller, Vienna, 1922).

Schneider, W. B.

H. Möller, W. B. Schneider, “Ein überraschender Versuch zum Thema Fata Morgana: der weggeblasene Lichtstrahl,” Physik in der Schule 32, 63–64 (1994).

Tammer, R.

Tape, C.

C. Tape, “Aquarium, Computer, and Alaska Range Mirages,” Phys. Teacher 38, 308–311 (2000).
[CrossRef]

Tape, W.

W. Tape, Atmospheric Halos, Vol. 64 of Antarctic Research Series (American Geophysical Union, Washington, D.C., 1994).
[CrossRef]

Vollmer, M.

Wood, R. W.

R. W. Wood, “Some experiments on artificial mirages and tornadoes,” Philos. Mag. 47, 349–353 (1899).

Am. J. Phys. (1)

P. R. Barker, P. R. M. Crofts, M. Gal, “A superior ‘superior’ mirage,” Am. J. Phys. 57, 953–954 (1989).
[CrossRef]

Appl. Opt. (1)

J. Opt. Soc. Am. A (1)

Philos. Mag. (1)

R. W. Wood, “Some experiments on artificial mirages and tornadoes,” Philos. Mag. 47, 349–353 (1899).

Phys. Teacher (1)

C. Tape, “Aquarium, Computer, and Alaska Range Mirages,” Phys. Teacher 38, 308–311 (2000).
[CrossRef]

Physik in der Schule (1)

H. Möller, W. B. Schneider, “Ein überraschender Versuch zum Thema Fata Morgana: der weggeblasene Lichtstrahl,” Physik in der Schule 32, 63–64 (1994).

Other (7)

W. Tape, Atmospheric Halos, Vol. 64 of Antarctic Research Series (American Geophysical Union, Washington, D.C., 1994).
[CrossRef]

R. Greenler, Sunlight and Ice Crystals in the Skies of Antarctica, educational video available from Blue Sky Associates, http://www.blueskyassociates.com .

R. Greenler, Rainbows, Halos, and Glories (Cambridge University, Cambridge, UK, 1980).

J. M. Pernter, F. M. Exner, Meteorologische Optik, 2nd ed. (W. Braumüller, Vienna, 1922).

Fata Morgana—Naturwunder und Zauberspuk, television film produced by M. Engler, Sierichstrasse 49, 22301 Hamburg, Germany; first broadcast 2001 by the French-German television program ARTE.

Fata Morganen—Zauberspiegel am Horizont, television film produced by M. Engler, Sierichstrasse 49, 22301 Hamburg, Germany; first broadcast 1996 by the French-German television program ARTE.

R. Greenler, The Mirage, the Discovery of Greenland and the Green Flash, educational video available from Blue Sky Associates, http://www.blueskyassociates.com .

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Figures (6)

Fig. 1
Fig. 1

Dispersion effects seen in a superior-mirage, saltwater-tank experiment. In both three-part mirages shown here, dispersion effects are clearly visible.

Fig. 2
Fig. 2

Explanation of a three-part superior mirage in the water-tank experiment. (a) Index of refraction as a function of height in the water tank, (b) curvature of light rays traveling in the tank, and (c) formation of a triple image in such a demonstration.

Fig. 3
Fig. 3

Lateral mirage: multiple images of a toy figure as seen through a U-shaped heated channel just before (a) and after (b) the mirage becomes observable.

Fig. 4
Fig. 4

Principle of a demonstration of blowing light away. In (a) laser light scattered on the hot plate is seen. When we blow colder air toward the hot plate, the light ray is bent away (b).

Fig. 5
Fig. 5

Experimental arrangement for simultaneous rotation of hexagonal column crystals around two perpendicular axes.

Fig. 6
Fig. 6

Experimentally simulated upper tangent arc resulting from light passing through a plastic hexagonal prism rotating about two axes: (a) setup and (b) close-up view of the arc.

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