Corner Reflectors

A large red and blue cube frame that has orange and blue information panels hanging from top to bottom. Inbetween these panels are blue and orange trianguular and square objects.

Mirrors at right angles (corner reflectors) reflect light directly back to a source, so they make things more visible at night.

How it works

Mirrors at right angles offer the opportunity to explore light reflection and everyday items like bike lights.

Things to try or ask around the exhibit

  • Look into the mirrors. Can you see your head in the centre of the mirrors?
  • Can you move so your head is not in the centre?

Background

This arrangement of mirrors made from three flat mirrors joined at right angles to each other, is called a corner reflector. A corner reflector reflects light back to where it came from. Your head will always appear to be in the middle of the mirrors no matter where you stand!

Finding the science in your world

The red and white reflectors on road posts and on the back of bikes and cars are made up of many small corner reflectors.