Take the 2-minute tour ×
Physics Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for active researchers, academics and students of physics. It's 100% free, no registration required.

This is related to my previous Phys.SE question on the derivation of the phase function - upon sifting and scanning through 600 pages of John Strutt's collected work, there is absolutely no mention of Rayleigh's phase function (related to Rayleigh scattering) quoted by a million other sources with no derivation or justification.

Rayleigh's scientific papers (1899.) @ archive.org

I know it is some sort of godforsaken approximation for which nobody on the Web has a justification or derivation for and it's really bothering me. I have no problem with empirical data reconstruction, but I want to see this "empirical data" which everyone just throws around.

Why do people say something is "defined". Nothing in physics is defined, it's not a recipe for an exotic top-of-the-head meal, throw three cosines, five g and you're there. It has to be constrained by nature in some way.

Please, assist!

share|improve this question
add comment

Know someone who can answer? Share a link to this question via email, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook.

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.