double refraction

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Related to double refraction: optic axis, Nicol prism


the act or process of refracting; specifically, the determination of the refractive errors of the eye and their correction with glasses.
the deviation of light in passing obliquely from one medium to another of different density.
cycloplegic refraction a type of static refraction, measured after lens accommodation is paralyzed by administration of cycloplegic eye drops.
double refraction refraction in which incident rays are divided into two refracted rays.
dynamic refraction refraction of the eye during accommodation.
ocular refraction the refraction of light produced by the media of the normal eye and resulting in the focusing of images upon the retina.
static refraction refraction of the eye when its accommodation is paralyzed.

dou·ble re·frac·tion

the property of having more than one refractive index according to the direction of the transmitted light.
Synonym(s): birefringence

dou·ble re·frac·tion

(dŭb'ĕl rĕ-frak'shŭn)
The property of having more than one refractive index according to the direction of the transmitted light.
Synonym(s): birefringence.


Property of anisotropic media such as crystals, whereby an incident light beam is split up into two beams, each plane polarized at right angles to the other. One beam, called ordinary, obeys Snell's law, while the other, called extraordinary, does not. Syn. double refraction. See anisotropic; law of refraction; Nicol prism; Wollaston prism.
References in periodicals archive ?
I have discovered that glass, and all other substances that have not the property of double refraction, are capable of receiving it from mechanical pressure, and that a compressing force always produces the structure which gives the exterior fringes in crystallized glass, while a dilating force produces the structure which develops the interior fringes" ([24], p.
9) As Brewster notes, Huygen's explanation of double refraction is more elegant than Newton's.
The double refraction occurs when a ray of light enters the crystal and, due to calcite's unique optical properties, the ray is split into fast and slow beams.
This Ibn Sahl had successfully treated the phenomenon of double refraction in a sphere, which led him to treat the subject of lenses, and allowed Kamal al-Din al-Farisi (d.