# DIFFRACTION GRATINGS AND SPECTROSCOPY

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1 Experiment 8 Name: S.N.: SECTION: PARTNER: DATE: DIFFRACTION GRATINGS AND SPECTROSCOPY Objectives To introduce and calibrate a diffraction grating, and use it to examine several types of spectra. To learn how to use a Vernier scale. To learn to use a grating spectrometer. To measure the wavelength of spectral lines of Na and H. Diffraction Gratings: In the previous lab you found that light shining through a double slit produced a central bright spot with alternating dark and bright spots on either side. The angle! between the central bright spot and the center of the bright spots of light on either side of the central spot is given by dsin! = m". d is the distance between slits, m is an integer that identifies the m th intensity maximum on either side of the central maximum, and " is the wavelength of the light. If you have more slits, all spaced d apart, the angles to principal maxima will remain the same regardless of the number of slits as long as d remains the same. What will change is the shape of the intensity pattern; see figure at right. With more slits, the bright spots get narrower and secondary maxima in between the bright spots get more numerous and fainter. Eventually only the bright, sharp principal maxima can be seen. A diffraction grating has a large number of slits, often 10,000 or more, that are very close together. Each intensity maximum or order is very narrow and intense. Diffraction gratings rely on both interference and diffraction: diffraction to bend the light away from the straight-line path, and interference to make very bright spots where the path length from each neighboring slit differs by exactly m wavelengths, so the individual wave disturbances add constructively. IN WHAT FOLLOWS, MAKE SURE LASERS ARE TURNED OFF EXCEPT WHEN IN USE. NEVER POINT LASERS AT ANYONE, AND NEVER LOOK DIRECTLY INTO LASER BEAMS. Fig. 8.1 He-Ne Laser with diffraction grating. 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

2 Set up the optical bench, laser, diffraction grating and large white board as shown in Fig The component carrier with the diffraction grating should be located so that the locating edge is 25.0cm from the end of the bench. Tape a piece of paper to the wood screen, and then place the base of the screen in contact with the end of the optical bench. The surface of the screen should be perpendicular to the bench. Note: If the laser, grating, and screen are not oriented correctly, there can be a significant error in your measurement of the angle from the central maximum to the higher order maxima. You can eliminate almost all of this error by taking the average of the distances from the central maximum to the maxima on the left and on the right. 1. Measure the distance D from the diffraction rulings to the screen surface and record it below. D = ± mm 2. Mark on the paper the location of the central maximum and the location of the first two maxima (orders m = 1 and 2) to the right and left of the central one. Measure the distance between the two first-order maxima 2x 1 and the distance between the two second-order maxima 2x 2. Use these measurements, the measurement of D and the wavelength of the laser, nm, to calculate the sine of the diffraction angles for the two maxima and the slit separation d for the diffraction grating. Compare your values to the one derived from the nominal slit linear density of 300 lines/mm. Show your work. 2x 1 = ± mm 2x 2 = ± mm sin! 1 = ± sin! 2 = ± d = ± mm d = ± mm Average d = ± mm 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

3 Figure 8-2. White light source with diffraction grating. Remove the laser. Set the white light source on the end of the optical bench as shown in Fig Center the light source in the opening at the end of the source enclosure and place the SLIT PLATE directly on the end of the light source. Center the SLIT PLATE so that a beam of light travels down the center of the optical bench. Remove the diffraction grating and center the PARALLEL RAY LENS on the bench. Move the PARALLEL RAY LENS along the bench until the central beam is focused on the screen. Reposition the diffraction grating 25.0 cm from the end of the bench as you had it in Describe the pattern you see on the screen. Include the order of the colors in your description. 4. Measure the distance 2x 1 (red) between the extreme outer edges of the spectrum in first order. Measure the distance 2x 1 (violet) between the extreme inner edge of the spectrum in first order. Use your value of d from 2 to calculate the wavelength " red of the extreme red edge of the spectrum and the wavelength " violet of the extreme violet edge of the spectrum. Show your work. Comment on the consistency of these wavelengths with the usually quoted extent of the visible spectrum, 400nm to 750nm. distance from the grating to the screen D = ± mm 2x 1 (red) = ± mm 2x 1 (violet) = ± mm " 1 (red) = ± nm " 1 (violet) = ± nm TA initials AT THIS POINT TURN ON THE SODIUM LAMP. IT WILL TAKE 10 MINUTES OR LONGER TO REACH A BRIGHT YELLOW COLOR. 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

6 Figure 8.3 How to read the Vernier Scale Measuring the Sodium Line 8. Adjust the slits until a narrow line is obtained and move the telescope to the right and center the first order yellow line in the field of view. You may be able to see that the line is actually two lines very close together (this will be easier to see in 2 nd order). The longer wavelength ["(D 1 ) = nm] line (it has the larger diffraction angle) is commonly called the D 1 line of the Na doublet. The other line is called D 2 ["(D 2 ) = nm]. Record the angle for the D 1 member of the doublet in the row labeled 1 st order, D 1 right in the Table below. 9. Move the telescope to the left and record the angle for the D 1 -left line in first order. 10. Repeat the right and left measurements for 2 nd and 3 rd orders for D 1 and record them in the table. You may need to refocus the eyepiece in the higher orders if the slit image is not sharp. 11. Complete the table by first calculating 1/2 the angular separation of D 1 in three orders. Use these values in the expression dsin! = n" to calculate 1/d, the number of lines per millimeter in the grating. Estimate the uncertainty in 1/d from the uncertainty #(1/2 angular separation). 1 st order 1/d = ± lines/mm 2 nd order 1/d = ± lines/mm 3 rd order 1/d = ± lines/mm 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

7 Order Line Angle #(Angle) 1/2 Angular Separation #(1/2 Angular Separation) (1/d) lines/mm 0 th order yellow 1 st order D 1 - right D 1 - left 2 nd order D 1 - right D 1 - left 3 rd order D 1 -right D 1 - left TA initials 12. Calculate the mean of the three values of 1/d and the uncertainty in the mean. Comment on the consistency of your values. Are they as equal as you might expect them to be? If not, what experimental problems may have led to the inconsistency? (1/d) mean = ± lines/mm Comment: 13. Compare (1/d) mean to the value you obtain from 2. TA initials 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

8 14. Devise a method for measuring the wavelength separation \$" of the two D lines. Record your data below and use it to determine \$" and its uncertainty. Compare your value to the accepted value. \$" = ± nm 15. Replace the Na lamp with a hydrogen lamp (H-lamp, black vertical narrow box). Take care not to move the spectrometer or the grating. Use blocks of wood to raise the lamp, if necessary. Turn on the lamp and measure the zero angle (alignment angle) and the angles at which the three easiest-to-see spectral lines are found in first order. You will have to adjust the position of the hydrogen lamp very carefully and you may have to open the slit a bit to see the lines.!(0 ) = 1 st order red line! = blue-green line! = violet line! = 16. How many orders can you see for each color? Is there a case where you see the short wavelengths of a higher order before you see the long wavelengths of a lower order? Describe your observations. 17. By the same technique you used to measure the Na lines, measure the positions of the three H lines in first or second order (say which you use) and calculate their wavelengths using your measured value of (1/d) mean. Order line Left/Right! " red blue-green violet L R L R L R 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

9 18. Find the best values for the wavelengths of the three lines and record them below with their uncertainties. Compare (7.1) them to the values listed below. "(red) = nm "( blue-green) = nm "(violet) = nm red " = ± nm blue-green " = ± nm violet " = ± nm These spectral lines belong to the famous Balmer series, in which electrons decay to the first excited electronic level of the H-atom from higher excited states. Decays to the lowest level (ground state) give the Lyman series. All the Lyman series wavelengths are in the ultraviolet range of wavelengths (the longest wavelength in the series is called Lyman % and has a wavelength of " = nm). Radiation of such short wavelengths does not penetrate the glass envelope of the lamp. Decays to the third excited state give rise to the Paschen series. All the wavelengths in this series are in the infrared (the shortest wavelength is " = nm) and are not visible. 119LAB8-GRATINGS.DOC

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