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Augustin Jean Fresnel

Fresnel, Augustin Jean (ōgüstăNˈ zhäN frānĕlˈ) [key] 1788–1827, French physicist and engineer. He is known for his research on light, especially on conditions governing interference phenomena in polarized light and on double refraction. His work supported the wave theory of light and the concept of transverse vibrations in light waves, which he analyzed mathematically. He devised a method of producing circularly polarized light and promoted the replacement of mirrors with compound lenses in lighthouses. He served as a government engineer during most of his career.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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