Physics 3 - 13.4 Mirrors and Lenses

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Ray Diagrams

  • A horizontal line passing through the centre of the lens is called the principal axis
  • A ray of light entering the lens parallel to the principal axis will be refracted through the principal focus of the lens, f
  • A ray through the principal focus mergers parallel to the principal axis
  • A ray through the centre of lens passes straight through without refracting
  • Rays of light from infinity are parallel


  • A converging lens acts as a magnifying glass when the object is closer than its focal length
  • The thing that you look at is called the object. What you can see is the image:

    magnification = image height / object height

An image is described by its magnification, whether it is upright or inverted relative to the object and whether it is real or virtual:

  • a real image is formed when rays…


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