Definition of Refraction

1. Noun. The change in direction of a propagating wave (light or sound) when passing from one medium to another.

Generic synonyms: Physical Phenomenon
Specialized synonyms: Birefringence, Double Refraction
Derivative terms: Refract

2. Noun. The amount by which a propagating wave is bent.
Exact synonyms: Deflection, Deflexion
Generic synonyms: Bend, Bending

Definition of Refraction

1. n. The act of refracting, or the state of being refracted.

Definition of Refraction

1. Noun. (physics) The turning or bending of any wave, such as a light or sound wave, when it passes from one medium into another of different optical density. ¹

2. Noun. (metallurgy) The degree to which a metal or compound can withstand heat ¹

¹ Source:

Definition of Refraction

1. [n -S]

Medical Definition of Refraction

1. Bending of waves as they pass from a medium having one refractive index to a medium (or region within a medium) having a different refractive index. (09 Oct 1997)

Lexicographical Neighbors of Refraction

refracted light
refracting angle of a prism
refracting telescope
refracting telescopes
refraction (current term)
refractive accommodative esotropia
refractive amblyopia
refractive errors
refractive index
refractive keratoplasty
refractive keratotomy

Literary usage of Refraction

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. A Treatise on Optics by David Brewster, Alexander Dallas Bache (1838)
"These lines are called axes of double refraction, because the phenomena are related to these lines. In some bodies there are certain planes, along which, ..."

2. The Microscope and Its Revelations by William Benjamin Carpenter (1883)
"Latos of refraction:—Spherical and Chromatic Aberration.. ALL Microscopes in ordinary use, whether Simple or Compound, depend for their magnifying power on ..."

3. American Journal of Physiology by American Physiological Society (1887- ). (1913)
"THE DEVELOPMENT OF DOUBLE refraction IX THE MUSCLES OF FISH EMBRYOS. BY FREDERICK W. ELLIS. CINCE the discovery of the double refraction of muscle by Boeck ..."

4. Bulletin by United States Weather Bureau (1902)
"SCHMIDT'S CIRCULAR refraction THEORY OF THE SUN'S DISK.* SCHMIDT'S theory of the sun's constitution and appearance depends upon the optical phenomenon of ..."

5. An Introduction to Natural Philosophy: Designed as a Text-book, for the Use by Denison Olmsted (1858)
"260. surface RS is that of water, into which a ray passes from the atmosphere, the ratio of the sines of incidence and refraction will be as 4 to 3 nearly, ..."

6. A Manual of Spherical and Practical Astronomy: Embracing the General by William Chauvenet (1874)
"Such a line would not coincide with the ray Se.; but in consequence of the small amount of the refraction, if the line Se be produced it will meet the ..."

7. Elementary Treatise on Physics Experimental and Applied by Adolphe Ganot (1875)
"SINGLE refraction. LENSES. 494- Phenomenon of refractionrefraction is the deflection which luminous rays experience in passing obliquely from one medium to ..."

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