Huygens' principle

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

From Christiaan Huygens, Dutch physicist.

Noun[edit]

Huygens' principle (uncountable)

  1. (physics) The assumption that each point on a wavefront may be regarded as a source of secondary waves and that the position of the wavefront at a later time is determined by the envelope of these secondary waves; proposed in order to explain the fact that light travels in a straight line and casts sharp shadows.