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written by Michael Davidson, Kenneth R. Spring, Matthew J. Parry-Hill, and Robert Sutter
published by the Olympus America, Inc. and the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory
This web-based tutorial provides an overview of the primary additive colors of light (red, green, and blue) and how they combine to produce the three complementary colors (yellow, cyan, and magenta). It includes four Java-based simulations that illustrate color addition and subtraction, color separation, and filtering. Teachers will benefit from the comprehensive background information, and students can experiment with the simulations to understand the nature of color perception.

This item is part of a larger collection of materials on optics and microscopy developed by the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory and Florida State University.

Please note that this resource requires Java.
Subjects Levels Resource Types
Optics
- Color
= Synthesis and Analysis of Color
- Middle School
- Lower Undergraduate
- High School
- Graduate/Professional
- Instructional Material
= Curriculum support
= Interactive Simulation
= Tutorial
Appropriate Courses Categories Ratings
- Physical Science
- Physics First
- Conceptual Physics
- Algebra-based Physics
- AP Physics
- Activity
- New teachers
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Intended Users:
Educator
Learner
Formats:
text/html
application/java
Access Rights:
Free access
Restriction:
© 2002 National High Magnetic Field Laboratory
Keywords:
RGB colors, Simulations, additive colors, color, color perception, color separation, light, optics, subtractive colors, tutorial
Record Cloner:
Metadata instance created April 28, 2008 by Caroline Hall
Record Updated:
December 1, 2009 by Caroline Hall
Last Update
when Cataloged:
February 9, 2008
Other Collections:

This resource is part of 2 Physics Front Topical Units.


Topic: Nature and Behavior of Light
Unit Title: Visible Light and Color

Students often misunderstand their studies of color perception because they know the primary colors as "red, yellow, and blue." However, the human eye contains cone cells receptors that are trained to respond to wavelengths of light in three regions: red, green, and blue. This is why we refer to "RGB" as the primary colors of light.  This tutorial is a wonderful background resource to help teachers understand the principles behind RGB color perception and how these combine to create the complementary colors of light: cyan, yellow, and magenta.  The four Java simulations are great fun, and can be used by your students as well.

Links to Units:

Topic: Nature and Behavior of Light
Unit Title: Visible Light and Color

To fully understand color perception, students need to shift gears from the traditional color wheel model they learned in grade school. This is a fun, high-quality tutorial that explains why the RGB primary colors of light (red, green, blue) are different from the primary colors of pigment and paint. It's because the photoreceptors in our eyes respond to wavelengths in certain regions: red, green, and blue. These colors then combine to form the complementary colors of light: cyan, magenta, and yellow. Your students will enjoy the four Java simulations that accompany the tutorial.

Link to Unit:
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Record Link
AIP Format
M. Davidson, K. Spring, M. Parry-Hill, and R. Sutter, (Olympus America, Inc., Center Valley, 2002), WWW Document, (http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html).
AJP/PRST-PER
M. Davidson, K. Spring, M. Parry-Hill, and R. Sutter, Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors, (Olympus America, Inc., Center Valley, 2002), <http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html>.
APA Format
Davidson, M., Spring, K., Parry-Hill, M., & Sutter, R. (2008, February 9). Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors. Retrieved November 21, 2014, from Olympus America, Inc.: http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html
Chicago Format
Davidson, M, K. Spring, M. Parry-Hill, and R. Sutter. Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors. Center Valley: Olympus America, Inc., February 9, 2008. http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html (accessed 21 November 2014).
MLA Format
Davidson, Michael, Kenneth R. Spring, Matthew J. Parry-Hill, and Robert Sutter. Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors. Center Valley: Olympus America, Inc., 2002. 9 Feb. 2008. 21 Nov. 2014 <http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html>.
BibTeX Export Format
@misc{ Author = "Michael Davidson and Kenneth R. Spring and Matthew J. Parry-Hill and Robert Sutter", Title = {Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors}, Publisher = {Olympus America, Inc.}, Volume = {2014}, Number = {21 November 2014}, Month = {February 9, 2008}, Year = {2002} }
Refer Export Format

%A Michael Davidson
%A Kenneth R. Spring
%A Matthew J. Parry-Hill
%A Robert Sutter
%T Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors
%D February 9, 2008
%I Olympus America, Inc.
%C Center Valley
%U http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html
%O text/html

EndNote Export Format

%0 Electronic Source
%A Davidson, Michael
%A Spring, Kenneth R.
%A Parry-Hill, Matthew J.
%A Sutter, Robert
%D February 9, 2008
%T Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors
%I Olympus America, Inc.
%V 2014
%N 21 November 2014
%8 February 9, 2008
%9 text/html
%U http://micro.magnet.fsu.edu/primer/lightandcolor/primaryhome.html


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Molecular Expressions: Optical Microscopy Primer - Primary Colors:

Contains Molecular Expressions: Interactive Java Tutorial - Primary Additive Colors

This is a Java simulation that allows users to mix the three primary colors of light (red, green, and blue) and see the resulting product of the mixtures.

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