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Photonics Dictionary

spectral order (diffraction grating)

When, for example, a beam of monochromatic light passes through a diffraction grating, the emergent rays that have remained undeviated are included in the zero spectral order. The light flux in the family of deviated rays that emerge after diffraction at the grating exhibit pronounced maxima along well-defined and enumerable directions on each side of the undeviated beam. The integers that distinguish these directions mark the so-called spectral orders.
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