Friends, could you please differentiate the words in context:

  • a beam of light
  • a ray of light
  • a streak of light

Subtle differences, major differences, nuances, practical differences?

1 Answer 1


A beam of light is like the output of a car's headlight, a torch (flashlight) or a searchlight, and can be quite wide.

A ray of light is a thin line, such as the first flash of light at dawn, or in a scientific experiment with prisms, or a mathematical theoretical item (the linear equivalent of a point).

A streak of light suggests motion, such as the trace from a shooting star, or a line across a painting.

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