Light Absorption, Reflection, and Transmission
Light can be absorbed. This is the reason why plants can make food for themselves during the day due to light absorbed from the sun, the light energy is converted into chemical energy, which is the sugar they made for themselves.
Not all light falling on an object is reflected. Some of the light is absorbed by the object. The amount of light an object can absorb depends on the object’s surface. Objects with white and shiny surfaces absorb a small amount of light falling on them, whereas those with rough and black surfaces absorb most of the light. Some examples of good light absorbers are blackboard and dark clothing.
Light can be transmitted. We are able to see through objects that are made of crystal, glass and clear plastic. These type of materials allow most light to pass through them. We say that light is transmitted by the objects. These objects are called transparent objects.
There is another type of object that allows some light to pass through them compared to transparent objects. These objects transmit less light, As a result, we cannot see through them clearly. These objects are known as translucent objects. Examples of translucent objects are Tracing paper and frosted glass.
Although both transparent and translucent objects transmit light that falls on them, they do reflect and absorb some amount of light. Otherwise, they would become invisible to us.
Most objects around us do not allow light passing through them at all. They can only reflect and absorb light. Thus we cannot see through them. These objects are called opaque objects. Some of the opaque objects are wooden bench, metal mug and ceramic pot. Objects that light are unable to pass through are made of opaque materials. Opaque materials either absorb or reflect the light. The amount of light that passes through is dependent on the opacity of the material an object is made.
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