conical refraction definition

  • noun:
    • the refraction of a ray of light into enormous quantities of rays, forming a hollow cone. This takes place when a ray of light is passed away through crystals of some substances, under specific circumstances. Conical refraction is of two kinds; external conical refraction, in which the ray dilemmas from the crystal in the shape of a cone, the vertex which has reached the point of introduction; and internal conical refraction, when the ray is became the type of a cone on entering the crystal, from where it issues in the shape of a hollow cylinder. This singular sensation was first found by Sir W. R. Hamilton by mathematical reasoning alone, unaided by test.
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