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These glasses (and contact lenses) allow
the wearer to see infrared, ultraviolet, and
many other electromagnetic bands which
we cannot see naturally.
The lenses act as spectroscopes, and
photochemically shift the light into our
"visible light" spectrum. Of course,
separate lenses are required
below or above ours, and for the extremes
WARNING: It is not recommended to
expose your eyes to Spectrolenses for
extended periods of time. Do not drive
while wearing Spectrolenses. If headaches
or nausea ensue, discontinue use of lenses
and contact a physician.
2nd item on the page in this science experiment catalog. [jurist, Oct 15 2004]
How to make your own spectroscope
[jurist, Oct 15 2004]
Frequency Doubling Crystal
It's possible at least to go from IR to green... [cowtamer, Apr 19 2011]
Nonlinear Frequency Conversion
Apparently tripling, quadrupling, etc. is also possible. Not sure if this works with non-coherent light, though... [cowtamer, Apr 19 2011]
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||//photochemically shift the light// - how?
||Are "Spectrolenses" similar to the Rainbow Glasses sold in kids' science experiment and joke catalogs? [see Link] These glasses were used in a demonstration on how to build your own Spectroscope.
||(+) From me -- this is not necessarily as crazy as it sounds -- some green laser pointers are actually IR lasers with frequency doubling crystals in them. Any photonics experts out there to comment?
||these colors can only be made visible by replacing or overlapping other colors. You can never have a true full color image including this data.
||//this is not necessarily as crazy as it sounds //
||One problem would be to maintain the direction of the light.
If you had a lens made of a frequency-doubling material, and
you shone red light at it, you'd surely just see a blue haze?
||Conversely, there are plenty of frequency-reducing materials
- that's just fluorescence. Put a fluorescent lens in your eyes
and shine UV light on it, and I think you'll just see a diffuse
||[-] for not just this, but several other reasons too...
||MaxwellBuchanan, I'm not sure if a transparent
material of frequency doubling material would
necessarily destroy the direction of
the light, as the coating on a fluorescent tube
might. The output from green laser
pointers is still straight, after all. If you could have
a frequency-doubled copy of the wavefront
entering the lens, I don't see why you wouldn't
see an image (not saying that you will, of course --
I have yet to lay my hands upon such a crystal).
||By the same token, I wonder if we could create
"UV Glasses" by doping glass with fluorescent
material...but I think in this case you might be
right about the blue haze...
||Does anyone have a green laser pointer they can
take apart and hold up to an IR source??? :)