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Revista Brasileira de Ensino de Física

Print version ISSN 1806-1117

Abstract

DALL'AGNOL, Fernando Fuzinatto  and  ENGELSEN, Daniel den. Colors from polarizers and birefringent films. Rev. Bras. Ensino Fís. [online]. 2012, vol.34, n.2, pp. 1-7. ISSN 1806-1117.  http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1806-11172012000200005.

In this paper we analyze the interesting artwork of Austine W. Comarow that creates colored images from colorless birefringent films. This artwork consists of birefringent polymer films sandwiched between two polarizers, similar to a polariscope. We explain quantitatively the main features observed in Comarow's work. We derive the equations that predict the colors generated in the system as a function of the thickness and the angles between the films. We illustrate the phenomena with simple homemade devices.

Keywords : birefringence; retarders; polariscope; polarimeter; Polage Art®.

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