Fourier Spectroscopy with the Michelson Interferometer

The Michelson Interferometer


The Michelson Interferometer is a device that splits a beam of coherent light into two beams which travel variable distances. By moving one of the mirrors, the path of one beam can be extended or contracted such that when reflected light returns to the beam splitter (labeled "semi-reflective lens"), the light is no longer in phase. This phase difference produces constructive or destructive interference, depending on its magintude.

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