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Name:  Anil
Status:  educator
Age:  40s
Location: N/A
Country: N/A
Date: 2000-2001


Question:
In a microwave oven does a black colored cup heat faster than a blue or red cup?


Replies:
Anil,

Why not try this and report back on the results, and, if there is a heating difference, try to explain the cause(s)?

Thanks for using NEWTON!

Ric Rupnik


Color as we see it relates to light with frequencies in the visible range. Something that absorbs all visible light may reflect almost all microwave light. It depends on things like the material that the surface is made of. Since our eyes only respond to visible light, color as we see it tells us nothing about what happens to microwaves.

If you know whether a particular object reflects or absorbs microwaves well, then you can make a prediction. Material that absorbs the microwaves well heats up much more quickly than material that reflects microwaves well.

Kenneth Mellendorf


No. The microwave energy is absorbed primarily by the water. The cup has very little to do with it. Even if the cup did impact the heating it would not be through its color. The color is determined by the absorption of visible light. The microwave energy is -- well it's microwave, not visible. All cups made of the same material will have the same microwave absorption characteristics. The color of the glaze will have no impact.

Greg Bradburn



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