By Enid Verity

Colour saw [Loose Leaf]

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Degrees Kelvin are therefore given in degrees centigrade plus 273°. At about 800°K, a radiator would glow a dark red; at about 1200° it would be orange; at 1300°, yellow, and then it would begin to turn blue. Candle-light would be around 2 000°' and direct sunlight as high as 5 000°K. A quite different method of producing light is to pass an electric current through a gas. Under the right conditions, the atoms of the gas are excited by the electric discharge, and produce an emission of light of frequencies or wavelengths which are characteristic of the gases b~ing excited.

In general Aristotle's ideas of colour phenomena dominated the Renaissance revival of classical scientific investigation, with the exception of that extraordinary enquirer Leonardo da Vinci, who adopted six colour sensations: white, black, red, yellow, green and blue, along the lines of those developed by the nineteenth-century scientist, Ewald Hering. Galileo was the first to attempt to measure the velocity of light. The seventeenth century produced the first scientific studies of colour in relation to light, notably by the French philosopher Descartes, who hypothesised that light was essentially a pressure transmitted through a dense mass of invisible particles, and by the Englishman Robert Boyle, perhaps the first to differentiate between colour as physical energy and colour as sensation.

The 'good' lamps, having correlated colour temperatures in the range of 3 800-5 500°K, were somewhat deficient in blue emission compared with daylight, but on the whole gave acceptable results. ' This statement made 80 years ago, is still true today, especially now that lamps with unusual spectral power distribution are becoming readily available. -r---~~~~~~ :: ~ Ii t i! g I[ 400 1-: 1-1 ENERGY RADIATED """' - <§: ... t-< 5.. ~ 6" ~ g 42 Colour Observed There are many ways of generating light, and the surface colours in the world around us are affected by the kind of light illuminating them and the spectral composition of the light from the illuminant, which can be revealed by the spectroscope.

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