Multiple rainbows from single drops of water and other liquids

  title={Multiple rainbows from single drops of water and other liquids},
  author={Jearl D. Walker},
  journal={American Journal of Physics},
  • Jearl D. Walker
  • Published 1 May 1976
  • Physics, Environmental Science
  • American Journal of Physics
The scattering of light by spherical drops and the theory of rainbows are reviewed in detail to predict the angular positions of rainbows from single drops. The angular positions of the first 13 rainbows of water, observed from a drop suspended in a student spectrometer, were compared to these theoretical positions. Since the rainbows were dependent on the refractive index, the positions shifted with drops of other fluids having other refractive indices. Light corn syrup yielded 11 rainbows… 

Theory of the observations made of high-order rainbows from a single water droplet.

  • J. Lock
  • Physics, Environmental Science
    Applied optics
  • 1987
The appearance of rainbows as colored glare spots in this situation is understood in terms of the caustics created in the vicinity of the droplet by the refracting light rays.

Rainbow scattering by a coated sphere.

We examine the behavior of the first-order rainbow for a coated sphere by using both ray theory and Aden-Kerker wave theory as the radius of the core a(12) and the thickness of the coating δ are

Rainbows by elliptically deformed drops. I. Möbius shift for high-order rainbows.

Using ray theory, the Möbius shift of the (p-1)-order rainbow angle for a particle having an elliptical cross section is obtained to first order in the ellipticity as a function of the tilt of the

Rainbow-enhanced forward and backward glory scattering.

Experiments using single glass spheres immersed in liquids show the predicted cross-polarized scattering with a sensitive dependence on m, and Mie theory computations illustrate the presence of rainbow glories at predicted m values and the x(4/3) irradiance factor.

Influence of Refractive Index Gradients within droplets on rainbow position and implications for rainbow refractometry

Rainbow refractometry allows the determination of the refractive indices of droplets if a homogeneous refractive index can be assumed throughout the whole droplet. The influence of gradients on the

E(6) diffraction catastrophe of the primary rainbow of oblate water drops: observations with white-light and laser illumination.

The present observations concern a much higher-order singularity, the E(6) or symbolic umbilic, in the scattering by levitated drops with monochromatic and collimated white-light illumination, which occurs when the Gaussian curvature of the scattered wave front vanishes in both principal directions, resulting in a high degree of directional focusing.

Using a laser source to measure the refractive index of glass beads and Debye theory analysis.

The effects of the refractive index and the glass bead size on the first and second minimum deviation angle position are analyzed and it is found that the first rainbow due to the scattering superposition of backward light of the low-refractive-index glass beads can be explained approximately with the diffraction, the external reflection plus the one internal reflection.

Non-Debye enhancements in the Mie scattering of light from a single water droplet.

The non-Debye enhancement of the eleventh-order rainbow glare spot is observed at an observation angle of 90 degrees on a 3.5-mm water droplet illuminated by polarized He-Ne laser light.