Refractive index database

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Optical constants of CH4 (Methane)
Rollefson and Havens 1940: Gas at 0 °C; n 1.68–14.8 µm

Wavelength: µm

Complex refractive index (n+ik)[ i ]

n   k   LogX   LogY   eV

Derived optical constants

Conditions & Spec sheet

n_is_absolute: true
temperature: 0 °C
pressure: 101325 Pa


Gaseous methane at standard conditions. 0 °C, 760 torr (101.325 kPa).


R. Rollefson and R. Havens. Index of refraction of methane in the infra-red and the dipole moment of the CH bond, Phys. Rev. 57, 710-717 (1940)


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Methane, CH4

Methane (CH4) is the simplest alkane and is a colorless, odorless gas under standard conditions. It is the primary constituent of natural gas and is notable for being a potent greenhouse gas. In the environment, methane is produced during the anaerobic decomposition of organic matter, such as in wetlands, ruminant digestion, and landfills. It can also be found in various industrial processes and is used as a fuel for heating and electricity generation. In the realm of optics, methane's refractive properties might be of interest, especially when considering its potential presence in gaseous atmospheres of extraterrestrial bodies.

Other name


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