UCSB Science Line
Sponge Spicules Nerve Cells Galaxy Abalone Shell Nickel Succinate X-ray Lens Lupine
UCSB Science Line
How it Works
Ask a Question
Search Topics
Our Scientists
Science Links
Contact Information
Trying to display refraction of light with a PRISM - we get perfect refraction with sunlight but are unable to find a light source other than sunlight that can display the entire spectrum of visible light. Can you please suggest a light source that comes close to sunlight for refraction purposes? This is needed for a science demonstration where sunlight is not available. Please assist.
Question Date: 2019-01-21
Answer 1:

A good place to start when looking for ways to mimic sunlight is to think about plants. When the sun emits light, the light waves travel to the earth and are absorbed by plants. The plants use this light in photosynthesis to help the plants grow. Plants are able to absorb light of many colors, and so they grow best when they are exposed to light sources that give them a full spectrum of colors, like the sun (except green, since plants usually reflect green light, making them appear green in color). So, a light bulb that mimics the sun is also good for helping plants grow. A light bulb that mimics sunlight is called a full-spectrum bulb, and can be found in hardware stores and online. Good luck with your demonstration!

Click Here to return to the search form.

University of California, Santa Barbara Materials Research Laboratory National Science Foundation
This program is co-sponsored by the National Science Foundation and UCSB School-University Partnerships
Copyright © 2020 The Regents of the University of California,
All Rights Reserved.
UCSB Terms of Use