Mach bands


Also found in: Medical, Wikipedia.
Related to Mach bands: Simultaneous contrast

Mach bands

 (mäk)
pl.n.
Illusory bands of intensified lightness and darkness perceived adjacent to the borders of light and dark in a visual image, caused by image processing in the retina and optic nerve.

[After Ernst Machwho discovered them.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
Observational astronomy is rife with examples of these "Mach bands," notably the "Terby White Spot," a spurious bright feature often seen bordering the intensely black shadow cast by Saturn's globe across the planet's rings (S&T: May 2014, p.
He also became interested in optical illusions, which led to his identification of what came to be called Mach bands. The story is told in a conversational tone with occasional philosophical asides from the authors.
Mach bands represent a special form of brightness contrast occurring at borders of adjacent visual stimuli differing in luminance (reviewed in Fiorentini, 1972).