Propagating solutions to Maxwell’s equations in classical electromagnetism and real photons in quantum electrodynamics. A superset of thermal-radiation.

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Which cyan colored line is produced in the Thomson e/m apparatus?

Related: Which green spectral line(s) are emitted in a Thomson tube? After reading Lisa Lee’s OP on an electron deflection tube, although she had some misunderstandings on its operation, I still ...
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250 views

Which green spectral line(s) are emitted in a Thomson tube?

Related: What is meant by boiling off electrons in a heater coil? In the Thomson tube we used in our class to produce an electron beam, the lab manual stated that the tube was filled with a low ...
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1answer
458 views

How is mobile communication made possible from airplanes?

I have heard that communication using mobile phones begins to degrade when used on a vehicle moving at speeds above 200 km/hr due to doppler effect as described here (p-22). How is this limitation ...
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Why don't charges move transverse to an EM wave?

Image we have an ultra-high intensity, ultra low frequency laser, with wattage on the order of terawatts and a wavelength on the order of a lightsecond. We rotate it that the electric field component ...
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355 views

Impossible microwave interference?

I was doing a microwave experiment with the following set up: there is a Gunn diode which emmits microwave radiation and a receiver (both work with polarised light). The strange thing is that when ...
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4answers
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Do Electromagnetic Waves really propagate through continuous Induction?

I've often seen it said that in an Electromagnetic Wave the changing Electric Field component creates the Magnetic Field Component and the changing Magnetic Field Component in turn creates an Electric ...
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How far can diffused undersea light travel and still be perceived by the human eye?

Example: If one SCUBA diver looks past another SCUBA diver horizontally into negative space, how far away is the most distant emission of 'blue' light waves? Consider the sight angle in question to ...
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67 views

Why is a $\pi$ phase added on reflection and why do things change with absorption? [duplicate]

Mathematically, how does a $\pi$ phase shift appear upon reflection of light off a optically denser medium? Why is it always $\pi$? If the medium is absorptive it is no longer $\pi$?
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200 views

Why does a street light cast a wavey shimmer across the water (at night)

See image You will have to zoom in. Why is the reflection a wavey one? Could someone explain how this is occurring, to the layman, (with the style of feynman if possible -heh) :)
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254 views

Reaction-at-a-distance: Do charged plates immediately repel each other?

Imagine that we have a pair of parallel plates, $A$ and $B$, separated by some distance as in Fig. $1$ above. At time $t_1$ we simultaneously charge both the plates. This could be done by previously ...
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Quantum mechanics: How do the atoms in an electronic circuit enter a smaller orbit on the filament of an incandescent light bulb?

Bear in mind that this is not a homework question, and I have put together some stuff to work on from below: http://www.doublexscience.org/how-fluorescent-lights-work-quantum-mechanics-in-the-home/ ...
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Magnetic field of solenoid in cone shape

I have done some drawings of the magnetic fields of cone shaped solenoid electromagnets. I based this on the work of Tesla and some explanations of Bashar, known as the Bashar Cones. I found very ...
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3answers
696 views

What is the energy of a standing EM wave? Is it probabilistic?

In a cavity, the standing wave will constructively interfere with itself, so its energy gets higher while the oscillator is still vibrating. Since the vibration time is not a constant value, and ...
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1answer
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Why depolarization of light by scattering

I am trying to understand the concept of depolarization of light by various particle shapes. For example, depolarization light scattered (re radiated) from a sphere illuminated with vertically ...
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1answer
244 views

What is the pressure of a gas required to ionize the gas using an electron gun?

How dense does a gas (Argon in particular ) have to be to in order to ionize it using electron bombardment and weak magnetic fields. Is there a correlation with the density of a gas and the easiness ...
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2answers
155 views

Strong response to UV radiation despite severe attenuation

Recently, I performed experiments to characterise the ultraviolet-A response in a smartphone camera (with the lens still attached). This question focuses on Figure 2 of my paper "Characterization of a ...
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1answer
133 views

Probability density of detection of collinearly emitted photons in two detectors

Update: As proposed by @dmckee, I added equation numbers and improved the display of some equations. The answer by @Trimok inspired me to look at coordinate systems which are not specific to the ...
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5answers
378 views

Can light travel slower than the maximum?

First of all, I know that light does indeed travel slower in a medium like air or water, but that's because the photons are bouncing off of the medium's particles and in different directions so the ...
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7answers
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Explaining UV radiation to a 6 year old

My (just completed) PhD involved a considerable amount of research involved with the detection of solar UV radiation. This generated quite a bit of interest, especially when I was conducting my ...
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229 views

Characteristic of photons for constant speed

What characteristic of photons causes them to travel with constant speed in all frames of reference? Till the topics I have studied, we always assume this but never got any ideas what can be in the ...
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2answers
851 views

Does thin film interference (anti-reflective coating) let more light through?

The theory of an anti-reflective coating is that the reflected light off the coating and the reflected light off the substrate is 180 degrees out of phase, causing destructive interference and ...
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2answers
284 views

Does gravity affect radiation incident on the planet?

Just curious ... Known facts: When outside the atmosphere levels of radiation are higher Typically such radiation is CBR, Solar Radiation Question: If the matter of the atmosphere and ...
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2answers
2k views

Continuous vs. Discrete Spectra in various materials

I read that the reason solids emit continuous spectra is that they don't have time to let their electrons decay-they are too close together. Given that electrons decay on the order of 100 nanoseconds ...
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Question about “quadrupole radiation” vector potential formula derivation

I tried to get an expression for $\mathbf A (\mathbf x )$ in quadrupole approximation. After some transformations of Liénard–Wiechert vector potential I got, as in many books, $$ \mathbf A \approx \...
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2answers
418 views

Calculate the polarization vector on reflection or refraction from a dielectric interface

I am interested in ray-tracing polarized photons. I have code that works very well for unpolarized light. When a ray hits a dielectric interface the photon is either reflected or refracted by ...
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3answers
352 views

How much of the universes mass is bound up in photons traveling between stars?

I was watching a Scott Manley video on youtube and he mentioned that the Sun was loosing 4 million tons of mass a second as it converts to energy. With a few trillion trillion stars also converting ...
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Is the color wheel just an optical illusion? [duplicate]

As a kid, I was taught that that blue and yellow make green, yellow and red make orange, and red and blue make purple - forming the subtractive color wheel. As an adolescent I was taught that blue and ...
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2answers
529 views

Polar ice caps and thermal radiation

I was reading an article on global warming and it said that the polar ice caps, because they are white, reflect a lot of the sun's radiation. The article also has a picture of some houses in England ...
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1answer
147 views

Energy conservation in plane wave

In plane wave the H and E are in phase. So the pointing vector disappears regularly every pi. How is energy conservation validated ? Is it through the uncertainty of energy and time ?
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1answer
146 views

electromagnetic interference

If the atmosphere is filled with electromagnetic waves all oscillating at different wavelengths and speeds how is it that they don’t all interfere with each other? For example turning on your light ...
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1answer
2k views

Decay of metastable state: spontaneous vs. stimulated emission.

I have a question about the upper laser level (the metastable level) in a 3-level laser system. I will call the ground level of the 3-level laser system by "g" and the metastable level by "m". The ...
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3answers
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2 ways to generate electromagnetic wave

According to Maxwell's equations, accelerating charges emit electromagnetic radiation. According to Quantum physics, heating causes electromagnetic radiation too. These 2 radiations, are they ...
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5answers
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Radio antenna producing waves in the visible spectrum [closed]

If a radio could produce waves in the visible light spectrum, what would the result be? This is a thought experiment that I've pondered for a few years now. I realize there are a few/many real-world ...
137
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1answer
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Why does NASA use gold foil on equipment and gold-coated visors?

I've read several websites about equipment covered with gold foil and astronaut helmet visors are coated with gold. However, their explanations are devoid of almost all physics content. Can someone ...
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2answers
855 views

Is compton scattering only effective by x rayphotons and gamma ray photons

Can Compton scattering work with any other forms types of photons, and why was the the Compton Scattering experiment only done with x ray photons?
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The physical meaning of electromagnetic wave

What, fundamentally, is an electromagnetic wave? As far as I know, all wave phenomena are derivations of an oscillating processes, e.g. particles vibrating in a medium. I can't imagine a wave process ...
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1answer
125 views

What is the intensity of this light?

I am struggling with a derivation that calculates the cross sections for Mie scattering and since the incident light is considered to be a x-polarized plane wave I thought that we would have $$I_i = \...
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3answers
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If photons carry 1 spin unit, why does visible light seem to have no angular momentum?

Spin 1 silver atoms have a definite spin axis, e.g. up or down along an axis labeled X. This in turn means that they carry angular momentum in an overt, visible fashion. However, spin 1 photons do ...
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1answer
285 views

'Push' in a rigid rod travel at speed of sound or speed of light [duplicate]

Two person, $A$ and $B$, each holding one end of a long solid rod. Now person $A$ pushes the rod on one end. Question: Is it correct that the information that the rod has been pushed will travel ...
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Is the electromagnetic spectrum discrete?

I'm just starting to learn physics and I have a question (that is probably stupid.) I learned that energy levels that the bound electron can have are discrete. I also learned that when an electron ...
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1answer
514 views

Is there a way to increase photon energy by decreasing its wavelength?

Can I decrease a photon's wavelength by a medium or a vacuum? Are there other ways of decreasing the wavelength?
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704 views

What type of electromagnetic radiation strikes the Earth's surface the most?

If you can could you lists the types of light from the greatest amount to the least amount (Ex: Visible, Infrared, Violet).
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Where the extra power comes from?

Suppose we have two radio waveforms each has amplitude of 1, then the total power is 2. Suppose these two waveforms add up some where constructively, then the amplitude become 2, and the total power ...
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2answers
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Does $E$ cause $B$ or does $B$ cause $E$ in Maxwell's equations?

From the Maxwell's equations we get $$\frac{\partial E}{\partial x} = -\frac{\partial B}{\partial t}$$ and $$\frac{\partial B}{\partial x} = -\mu_0\epsilon_0\frac{\partial E}{\partial t}$$ ...
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2answers
184 views

Applicability of the concept of voltage in electrodynamic circuits

In electrostatics, we have $$\nabla \times \vec{E} = 0$$. Hence, we can define a scalar potential $V$, where $$\vec{E} = -\nabla V$$. We know from Faraday's law that $$\nabla \times \vec{E} = -\frac{\...
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The Quantization of Photon Energies [duplicate]

Despite Planck's constant being in $E=hf$, it would appear to me that energy is still not discrete, as frequency can be an fraction of a Hertz that one wants. How does this imply that electromagnetic ...
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2answers
149 views

Colors of light

White light is always said to contain all the different wavelengths of light. Why, then, can we 'make' new colors simply by adding wavelengths? Is it just a matter of our perception, that, when two ...
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2answers
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Gravitational slingshot of light using a black hole/massive object

Wikipedia has this page on gravity assists using planets. In some cases this effect was used to accelerate the spacecraft to a higher velocity. This diagram shows this in a very oversimplified manner. ...
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Mie Scattering for spheres with constant dipole moment

I was wondering whether there exists a theory that describes Mie Scattering for spheres that have a constant dipole moment. Since there are theories that describe Mie scattering in the case of a ...
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1answer
406 views

Retarded potential in gravitational field?

Is there a retarded potential concept in gravitational field similar to electromagnetic radiation?