Latest Issue of Science News


News

Newton's Dusty Mirror: Old experiment inspires ultrafast imaging

By
4:48pm, August 8, 2007

Occasionally, science museums can stimulate new science. Inspired by an exhibit on an optical experiment performed by Isaac Newton, physicists have taken the first X-ray snapshot of a microscopic explosion.

Physicists Henry Chapman and Saa Bajt took their daughter to the Chabot Space and Science Center in Oakland, Calif., in 2005. There, they saw a replica of an experiment in which Newton had sent a beam of light through a hole in a screen. The beam reflected off a mirror and back onto the screen—where Newton was surprised to see concentric rings of light.

This article is available only to subscribing members. Join SSP today or Log in.

More from Science News