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Applied Optics

Applied Optics

APPLICATIONS-CENTERED RESEARCH IN OPTICS

  • Vol. 41, Iss. 3 — Jan. 20, 2002
  • pp: 437–441

Grazing-incidence iridescence from a butterfly wing

Chris Lawrence, Peter Vukusic, and Roy Sambles  »View Author Affiliations


Applied Optics, Vol. 41, Issue 3, pp. 437-441 (2002)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/AO.41.000437


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Abstract

The Troides magellanus butterfly exhibits a specialized iridescence that is visible only when its hind wings are both illuminated and viewed at near-grazing incidence. The effect is due to the presence of a constrained bigrating structure in its wing scales that has been previously observed in only one other species of butterfly (Ancyluris meliboeus). However, whereas the Ancyluris presents wide-angle flickering iridescence, the Troides butterfly uses pigmentary coloration at all but a narrow tailored range of angles, producing a characteristic effect.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(050.1950) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction gratings
(050.1960) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction theory
(050.1970) Diffraction and gratings : Diffractive optics
(170.1420) Medical optics and biotechnology : Biology

History
Original Manuscript: April 28, 2001
Revised Manuscript: October 17, 2001
Published: January 20, 2002

Citation
Chris Lawrence, Peter Vukusic, and Roy Sambles, "Grazing-incidence iridescence from a butterfly wing," Appl. Opt. 41, 437-441 (2002)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/ao/abstract.cfm?URI=ao-41-3-437


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References

  1. P. Vukusic, J. R. Sambles, C. R. Lawrence, “Colour mixing in wing scales of a butterfly,” Nature (London) 404, 457 (2000). [CrossRef]
  2. R. B. Morris, “Iridescence from diffraction structures in the wing scales of Callophrys rubi, the Green Hairstreak,” J. Entomol. Ser. A 49, 149–154 (1975).
  3. P. Vukusic, J. R. Sambles, C. R. Lawrence, R. J. Wootton, “Quantified interference and diffraction in single Morpho butterfly scales,” Proc. R. Soc. London Ser. B 266, 1403–1411 (1999). [CrossRef]
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