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Michelson interferometer(mÿ -kĕl-sŏn) An early form of interferometer in which a beam of light is split and subsequently recombined. Any difference in optical path traveled by the two beams leads to a phase difference between the recombining beams, and hence interference fringes are produced.
Michelson interferometer[′mī·kəl·sən ‚in·tər·fə′räm·əd·ər]
An interferometer in which light strikes a partially reflecting plate at an angle of 45°, the light beams reflected and transmitted by the plate are both reflected back to the plate by mirrors, and the beams are recombined at the plate, interfering constructively or destructively depending on the distances from the plate to the two mirrors.