Treasury Reflection

August 28, 2010

Reflection cropped

Photographer: Josh Mendelsohn
Summary Author
: Josh Mendelsohn; Dave LynchJim Foster

The photo above features a sharply reflected image of the U.S. Treasury Building in Washington, D.C. It's being reflected in a flooded walk-way following a deluge in the Nation's Capital on August 18, 2010. Of course, the clarity of images reflected from water is dependent upon the roughness of the water surface. This looks to be a near perfect mirror image; however, if the actual building was in the same camera view, it could be seen that the reflected image is slightly dimmer. Only at an incidence angle of 90 degrees is the reflection as bright as the actual object. Additionally, since the water is shallow and the bottom is illuminated through the water, the underlying brown tiles can be seen. They are most evident near the bottom of the picture where the angle of incidence is smaller (steeper) and therefore the surface reflections are weaker, allowing the bottom to show through without being mixed with as much of the surface reflection. Note that the reflections of the trees, which are darker because they are blocking the bright skylight, permit the brown tiles to show through at larger angles of incidence -- nearer the center of the picture.

Photo details: Camera Maker: Apple: Camera Model: iPhone; Focal Length: 3.9mm; Aperture: f/2.4; Exposure Time: 0.0043 s (1/230); ISO equiv: 80; Metering Mode: Average; Exposure: program (Auto); White Balance: Auto;
Flash Fired: No (Auto); Color Space: sRGB.