Theories Of Color Vision And Opponent Process Theory Essay

1570 Words Dec 9th, 2015 null Page
Theories of Color Vision

The visual abilities of human beings are incredibly fascinating. We can view a large range of color from a small choice of wavelengths along the electromagnetic spectrum, 400nm-700nm. Our understanding of this perception of color comes from two major theories Tri-chromatic theory of color vision and opponent-process theory. Both theories have their merits and one actually grew out of the other. The first theory proposed was the tri-chromatic theory.

The tri-chromatic theory of color vision states that our color vision is dependent on activity of our three color receptors. It goes on to say that the mixture of these three independent wavelengths for color could produce any other given color on the visual spectrum. This theory was first proposed by two different 19th century, researchers; Thomas Young and Hermann von Helmholtz. They each worked separately to find different parts of the theory. Unfortunately, they were not privy to the equipment researches were in the mid 20th century for they could not give support for their theories. It was not until the 1960s that support was first found. Researcher 's were interested in if there were in fact, three receptor mechanisms for color and if there were what were their physiological properties. This research from the 1960 first measured the absorption spectra for the three different cone pigments. They found the most absorption at short wavelengths to be 419nm, most absorption at medium wavelengths to…

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