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When Are The Plain And Concave Surfaces Of The Mirror Used?

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Plain Mirrors

The most well known use for a plain mirror is that of checking your reflection when brushing your hair, but plain mirrors have multiple uses besides just personal grooming. They are also not simply used for practical purposes but for home decoration in place of a picture or for its aesthetic appeal in architecture. Lasers, cameras, telescopes, kaleidoscopes and industrial machinery all make us of plain mirrors.

Through the utilization of the concepts of Morse code, mirrors can be used for sending messages, signaling and for rescue purposes, and as such will often be found in survival kits.

Concave Mirrors

Concave mirrors are curved inward with the reflective surface furthest away from the light source. This produces a magnification effect which is ideal for use in make up mirrors, dental mirrors and telescopes.

Due to the inward curvature of a concave mirror light rays deviate off the arc of the mirror. The image may show as being inverted if an object is too far from the mirror, this can be demonstrated with the use of a common household spoon. You will notice that the article will appear upright and magnified the closer to the mirror it gets. They are also a fundamental way in which car headlights work as the reflection from the actual headlight allows the beam to cover a much wider area than it would be able to otherwise. A flash light employees the exact same principle.

In some microscopes a concave mirror is placed at the base of the instrument. It's purpose to reflect light from a light source and amplify the light. This mirror is not always present and will nowadays often be replaced by an illuminator which is a steady light source used to perform the same job.

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