Light & Color

Michelson Interferometer

This is a somewhat simplified duplicate of the interferometer that Michelson used to disprove the existance of the ether. A laser is split into two beams with a half-silvered mirror, sent off in different directions, reflected back and recombined on a screen. The two beams interfere with each other producing a series of bright bands. The bands can be changed by slightly moving one of the reflecting mirrors, or by removing the air from a chamber along the light path.

Interferences visible on the white screen