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Tales from the Prep Room: Diffraction

From the Royal Institution, this short video shows how to use a laser and a piece of thin wire to show a diffraction pattern.

Adding more wires into the path of the laser changes the diffraction pattern that is generated. Another diffraction pattern is seen when the laser is aimed at the fine coil of a filament lamp.

The process is analagous to x-ray crystallography in which the diffraction patterns that are produced can be used to deduce the shapes of molecules.

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