Examples of Objects That Reflect Light

Objects That Reflect Light

Light is a form of energy that falls within the visible range of the electromagnetic spectrum. In other words, light rays are simply electromagnetic radiations that have wavelengths in the range of 400 nanometers to 700 nanometres. In the electromagnetic spectrum, visible light is located right in between the infrared and ultraviolet radiations. There exist five main physical characteristics of a light wave, namely polarization, intensity, the direction of propagation, wavelength, frequency, and coherence. One of the most important properties of a light wave is reflection. Reflection is the ability of light waves that enables them to bounce back after striking the surface of certain objects. The light radiations tend to travel at the speed of light, which is typically equal to 3 x {10}^{8} m/sec. The rays of light tend to follow a straight-line path for propagation. The light radiations continue to move in straight lines till they hit a reflective surface. After hitting the surface of a reflective material, the radiations tend to bounce back and exhibit the natural process of reflection.

Examples of Objects That Reflect Light

There exist a number of objects in our daily life that are capable of reflecting light. Some of them are listed below:

1. Mirrors

A mirror is an object that allows complete reflection of the light radiations falling on its surface. This property of mirrors to reflect light in the surroundings is used in multiple applications such as to carry out imaging processes, to keep the buildings warm, etc.


2. Eyes

Our eyes form a perfect example of objects that are able to reflect light radiations. The reflection of light is the phenomenon that helps create a sense of sight in our eyes. The eyes of certain animals such as cats, jaguars, dogs, raccoons, etc. have a special reflective coating that is known as a tapetum lucidum. This particular reflective coating helps the eyes of the animal to glow during the nighttime or in the darkness.


3. Water Surface

The water surface is capable of demonstrating the reflection of light radiations in one of the best possible manners. When the light rays are made to fall on the surface of the water, a major portion of the light rays gets refracted and pass through the water, while a portion of the radiations bounce back and exhibit reflection.

Water Surface

4. White Paper

A white sheet of paper, cardboard, or piece of fabric is a common object present in our real life that is capable of reflecting any form of natural or man-made light falling on its surface.

White Paper

5. Moonlight 

Moon does not have a light of its own. The light rays emitted by the moon are actually the sun radiations that fall on the surface of the moon and bounce away. This means that moonlight is a reflected version of sunlight and the moon serves to be yet another example of the objects that are capable of reflecting light rays in real life.


6. Kitchen Foil 

Kitchen foil is typically made up of aluminium. The light falling on the surface of the kitchen foil directly gets reflected, thereby making kitchen foil a perfect example of objects that are capable of exhibiting the reflection phenomenon in real life.

Kitchen Foil 

7. Jewellery and Accessories

Various jewellery and ornaments have the ability to exhibit the reflection of light in real life.

Jewellery and Accessories

8. Coloured Objects

We are able to perceive different colours of objects due to the natural phenomenon of the reflection of light. When light falls on the surface of an object, a major portion of light gets absorbed, while a selected portion of light bounces off its surface. The wavelength of the light that gets reflected is used to determine the colour of the object.

Coloured Objects

9. Metals

Metals have the natural ability to reflect the light radiations falling on their surface. This ability of metals to reflect the light radiations is also known as the lustre property of metals that helps them to shine.


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