Relationship between Color and Wavelength Absorbed
In the world of physics and optics, colors are closely associated with the wavelengths of light. The absorption of light by different materials determines the colors we perceive. This article will delve into the relationship between color and the wavelengths of light that are absorbed by objects.
I. The Color Spectrum:
1.1. Visible Light:
Visible light is a small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, ranging from approximately 380 nm (nanometers) to 750 nm in wavelength. This range is what our eyes are capable of perceiving as different colors.
1.2. The Color Wheel:
The color wheel is a visual representation of the colors in the visible light spectrum. It consists of primary colors (red, blue, and yellow), secondary colors (orange, green, and violet), and tertiary colors (a combination of primary and secondary colors).
II. Reflection and Absorption of Light:
When light strikes an object, it can either be reflected or absorbed. The color we perceive is determined by the wavelengths of light that are reflected back to our eyes. If an object reflects all wavelengths, it appears white, while if it reflects none, it appears black.
When light is absorbed, certain wavelengths are absorbed by the object, while others are transmitted or reflected. The wavelengths that are absorbed determine the color we perceive. For example, when an object absorbs all wavelengths except red, it appears red to our eyes.
III. Relationship between Color and Wavelength Absorbed:
3.1. Primary Colors:
Each primary color (red, blue, and yellow) has a corresponding wavelength range that it absorbs. Red objects absorb shorter wavelengths of light, around 620-750 nm, while blue objects absorb longer wavelengths, around 450-495 nm. Yellow objects absorb a range of wavelengths between red and green, approximately 570-590 nm.
3.2. Secondary and Tertiary Colors:
Secondary and tertiary colors absorb a combination of wavelengths from their primary color components. For example, orange objects absorb a range of wavelengths between red and yellow, while green objects absorb a range between yellow and blue. The specific absorption ranges for each secondary and tertiary color can vary slightly.
The color we perceive in various objects is a result of the wavelengths of light that are absorbed by these objects. The relationship between color and the wavelength absorbed is crucial in understanding the science behind color perception. By studying the absorption patterns of different colors, scientists and researchers can gain insight into various fields such as material science, art, and even biological processes. So next time you appreciate the vibrant colors around you, remember the intricate relationship between color and the wavelengths of light.