A concave mirror which is also called a converging mirror has its reflecting surface bulging inwards, i.e. away from the incident light. There are numerous uses of concave mirrors in daily life. It is used in the aircraft landing to guide the airplane, it is used as a torch to reflect the light rays, it is used during shaving to get an erect and enlarged image of the face, etc.
Some concave mirror uses are listed in the points below.
- Shaving mirrors
- Head mirrors
- Astronomical telescopes
- Solar furnaces
Concave mirrors reflect light inward to one focal light. Therefore, they are mostly used to focus light. A concave mirror shows different image types depending on the distance between the mirror and the object. Concave mirrors are called converging mirrors because as light falls on the mirror, it collects the light and refocuses the parallel incoming rays. Some of the most important and common applications of the concave mirror are described below.
Used in shaving mirrors
Concave mirrors are most commonly used in shaving because of their reflective and curved surface. During shaving, the concave mirror forms an enlarged and erect image of the face when the mirror is held closer to the face.
Used as a head mirror
Concave mirrors are also used by E.N.T. specialist. They put the concave mirror on their patient’s forehead. When the light rays from the light source are reflected from the concave mirror, it is focused on the ear, nose, or throat of the patient making the infected parts more visible.
Concave mirror uses in the ophthalmoscope
Concave mirrors are used in optical instruments such as Ophthalmoscope. Ophthalmoscope consists of a concave mirror with a hole in the center. The doctor focuses through the small hole from behind the concave mirror while a light beam is directed into the pupil of the patient’s eye. This makes the retina visible and makes it easy for doctors to check.
Uses of concave mirror in astronomical telescopes
Concave mirrors are also used in making astronomical telescopes. In an astronomical telescope, a concave mirror of a diameter of 5 meters or more is used as the objective.
Concave mirrors used in headlights
Concave mirrors are widely used in headlights of automobiles and motor vehicles, torchlights, railway engines, etc. as reflectors. The light source is placed at the focus of the mirror, so after reflecting the light rays travel over a huge distance as parallel light beams of high intensity.
Used in solar furnaces
Large concave mirrors are used to focus sunlight to produce heat in the solar furnace. They are also used in solar ovens to collect a large amount of solar energy in the focus of the concave mirror for heating, cooking, melting metals, etc.
These were some common uses of the concave mirror in daily life. Concave mirrors are also used in satellite dishes, electronic microscope, visual bomb detectors, etc. Stay tuned with BYJU’S to learn more interesting physics concepts like a convex mirror, laws of motion, etc. with the help of interactive video lessons.