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Photonics Dictionary

Newton's rings

The series of rings or bands formed when light beams reflected from two polished, adjacent surfaces, placed together with a thin film of air between them, interfere. By counting these bands from the point of actual contact, the departure of one surface from the other is determined. The regularity of the fringes maps out the regularity of the distance between the two surfaces. This method usually is used to determine the fit of a surface under test to a standard surface of a test glass.
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