# Snell's law

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Related to Snell's law: critical angle

## Snell's law

(snĕlz)
n.
A law describing the refraction of a ray of light at the surface between two media, such that the product of the refractive index of the first medium and the sine of the angle of incidence equals the product of the refractive index of the second medium and the sine of the angle of refraction.

[After Willebrord Snel van Royen (1580-1626), also called Willebrord Snellius, Dutch astronomer and mathematician who formulated the law.]

## Snell's law

(snɛlz)
n
(General Physics) physics the principle that the ratio of the sine of the angle of incidence to the sine of the angle of refraction is constant when a light ray passes from one medium to another
[C17: named after Willebrord Snell (1591–1626), Dutch physicist]
References in periodicals archive ?
This can be calculated by applying Snell's Law to the optical system under investigation:
Applying Snell's law at the boundary of both the interfaces results in following expression:
But some man-made materials can defy Snell's law and send light refracting on the other side of the line--a negative refraction that essentially takes fish out of water.
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