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Journal of the Optical Society of America

Journal of the Optical Society of America

  • Vol. 52, Iss. 8 — Aug. 1, 1962
  • pp: 940–946

Visual Responses to Time-Dependent Stimuli. IV. Effects of Chromatic Adaptation

D. H. KELLY  »View Author Affiliations

JOSA, Vol. 52, Issue 8, pp. 940-946 (1962)

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At photopic levels, the amplitude-frequency response curve of the retina assumes a wide variety of shapes when the color of the flickering component of the stimulus is not the same as that of the steady component. Apparently, the photoreaction rates and neural time constants of the various color subchannels differ in the same order as their spectral sensitivities, so that low-frequency sensitivity is enhanced when the adapting wavelength is longer than the flickering wavelength, and high-frequency sensitivity is enhanced when the adapting wavelength is shorter than the flickering wavelength. Chromatically adapted responses to white flicker show that the low-frequency band (4–7 cps) is controlled by the blue-sensitive channel; the middle-frequency band (10–15 cps), by the green-sensitive channel; and the high-frequency band (20–30 cps), by the red-sensitive channel. The results also depend on the spatial pattern of the stimulus; a sharp-edged field obscures the "red" peak and enhances the "blue" peak, even in the absence of blue light. These phenomena cannot be detected with traditional flicker-fusion stimuli, since they do not occur at the CFF.

D. H. KELLY, "Visual Responses to Time-Dependent Stimuli. IV. Effects of Chromatic Adaptation," J. Opt. Soc. Am. 52, 940-946 (1962)

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  1. D. H. Kelly, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 51, 422 (1961).
  2. D. H. Kelly, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 51, 747 (1961).
  3. D. H. Kelly, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 52, 89 (1962).
  4. D. H. Kelly, Rev. Sci. Instr. 32, 50 (1961).
  5. H. DeLange Dzn, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 48, 777 (1958). See Fig. 8.
  6. See reference 4, Fig. 6.
  7. It will be recalled from Part I that at low frequencies, the absolute amplitude sensitivity of a given channel is controlled by its adaptation level. When two white-light response curves are measured at different luminances, the adaptation levels of all three subchannels are altered proportionally. But if different subchannels have different spectral sensitivities, this will no longer be true when two monochromatic response curves are measured at different wavelengths.
  8. Calculation of the actual luminance or radiance ratios would simply translate each curve up or down by a small constant amount on the log scales used in Figs. 3–8, leaving the curve shapes unaffected.
  9. The reader-may be reminded here of the "two-color threshold" technique used extensively by Stiles and later by Boynton et al. See, e.g., W. S. Stiles, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 45, 100 (1959); R. M. Boynton and M. Wagner, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 51, 429 (1961); W. R. Bush, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 45, 1047 (1955). A meaningful comparison of these transient color responses with the corresponding steady-state conditions would be of considerable interest, but is not possible within the scope of the present paper. (However, see the discussion of white-light transients in reference 2.)
  10. See reference 1, Fig. 5.
  11. A. Fiorentini, "Dynamic Characteristics of Visual Processes," Chap. VII in E. Wolf, Editor, Progress in Optics, Vol. I (North-Holland Publishing Company, Amsterdam, 1961).
  12. O. Bryngdahl, Optica Acta 8, 1 (1961).
  13. D. H. Kelly, J. Opt. Soc. Am. 49, 730 (1959).
  14. R. W. Ditchburn, "Eye-movements in Relation to Perception of Color," in Visual Problems of Color, Vol. II Symposium No. 8, National Physical Laboratory, Her Majesty's Stationary Office, London, 1958.

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