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Schlieren Photography
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Summary
There are so many things in the world we just can’t see. Air is one such example that is transparent, it can only be felt but cannot be seen. But using Schlieren photography movement of air can be seen. A Schlieren camera is not literally photographing air but it is capturing light distorted by air. But the result is like watching air move.
Principle: We cannot directly see a difference in temperature, density, or a shock wave in transparent air. However, all these disturbances refract light rays, so they can cast shadows. The plume of hot air rising from a fire, for example, can be seen by way of its shadow cast upon a nearby surface by the uniform light.
Keywords: Schlieren camera, Shadowgraph, Mach-Zehnder interferometer, August Toepler, Seeing Air
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