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Meaning of Diffracton

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  • the breaking up of a wave as it passes a geometric structure (e.g. a slit) followed by reconstruction of the wave by interference
  • Note: the diffraction of light (and other electromagnetic radiation), into patterns of light and dark bands or spots, is a function of quantum mechanics
- The Nuttall Encyclopedia

Dif*frac"tion (?), n. [Cf. F. diffraction.] (Opt.) The deflection and decomposition of light in passing by the edges of opaque bodies or through narrow slits, causing the appearance of parallel bands or fringes of prismatic colors, as by the action of a grating of fine lines or bars.

Remarked by Grimaldi (1665), and referred by him to a property of light which he called diffraction.

Diffraction grating. (Optics)See under Grating. -- Diffraction spectrum. (Optics)See under Spectrum.

- Webster's Unabridged Dictionary (1913)

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