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Proceedings Paper • Open Access

Measuring and teaching light spectrum using Tracker as a spectrometer
Author(s): M. Rodrigues; M. B. Marques; P. Simeão Carvalho

Paper Abstract

In this work we present a simple and low cost setup that allows obtaining the light spectra and measuring the wavelength of its features. It is based on a cheap transmission diffraction grating, an ordinary digital camera and using Tracker software to increase measuring accuracy. This equipment can easily be found in most schools. The experimental setup is easy to implement (the typical setup for a pocket spectroscope) replacing the eye with the camera. The calibration is done using a light source with a well-known spectrum. The acquired images are analyzed with Tracker (freeware software frequently used for motion studies). With this system, we have analyzed several light sources. As an example, the analysis of the spectra obtained with compact fluorescent lamp allowed to recognize the spectrum of mercury in the lamp, as expected. This spectral analysis is therefore useful in schools, among other topics, to enable the recognition of chemical elements through spectroscopy, and to alert students to the different spectra of illuminating light sources used in houses and public places.

Paper Details

Date Published: 8 October 2015
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 9793, Education and Training in Optics and Photonics: ETOP 2015, 97931L (8 October 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2223120
Show Author Affiliations
M. Rodrigues, IFIMUP-IN (Portugal)
Middle School of Viso (Portugal)
M. B. Marques, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
INESC-TEC (Portugal)
P. Simeão Carvalho, Univ. do Porto (Portugal)
IFIMUP-IN (Portugal)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9793:
Education and Training in Optics and Photonics: ETOP 2015

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