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

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Why do (most) metals cause problems in a microwave oven? Which metals (if any) don't? [duplicate]

Most of us have seen microwave ovens with metal racks or shelves, which challenges the common notion that you can't (safely) put metal in a microwave oven. What's going on here? Is it a matter of ...
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5answers
583 views

Why do photons travel?

Photons travel at the speed of light. Is there a known explanation of this phenomenon, and if yes, what is it? Edit: To be clearer, my question is why do photons travel at all. Why do they have a ...
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1answer
137 views

Are multipole fields, multipole expansion, and multipole radiation the same thing?

Interaction between electromagnetic radiation and nuclei can be written in terms of multipole radiation. Are multipole fields, multipole expansion and multipole radiation the same thing? I have found ...
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1answer
57 views

Slow light and gravitational lensing

It has been proposed that the Sun's gravitational lens be used to observe distant objects, but according to relativity a spacecraft would need to be 550 AU away in order to take advantage of the ...
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2answers
111 views

Is there a differential equation that can represent a circuit with an arbitrary voltage source connected acrorss an antenna?

An RLC circuit with a voltage source can be characterized by the differential equation: $$ LC\;\ddot{I}\left(t\right) + RC\; \dot{I}\left(t\right) + I\left(t\right)-C \;\dot{V}\left(t\right) = 0 $$ ...
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68 views

What is the maximum possible frequency and wavelength?

As a start I assumed Planck angular frequency which is the reciprocal of Planck time as the frequency upper limit, but not so sure. On the other hand, is there a lower limit? Can we consider the ...
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1answer
467 views

What is the linear momentum of an EM wave in a medium?

In free space, the linear momentum density of an EM wave is given by the Poynting vector $\vec S$ over the speed of light squared, $\vec g=\frac{\vec S}{c^2}$. In a medium, $S$ is generally not ...
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1answer
123 views

Why do dark objects radiate thermal electromagnetic energy faster than light objects?

Kirchhoff's law of thermal radiation says that: For a body of any arbitrary material, emitting and absorbing thermal electromagnetic radiation at every wavelength in thermodynamic equilibrium, ...
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3answers
165 views

What electric field vector should I use for modeling unpolarized light?

Regardless of computational cost, light is a kind of electromagnetic wave, so it can be simulated with Maxwell's equations. If we want to simulate light with Maxwell's equations, we need to express ...
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1answer
72 views

Why are waves, the means, of information transfer over long distances, excluding difusion or contact of info stored in matter

Practical long distance communication, which does not rely on the movement of encoded configurations of matter, from source to destination(odor,books,DNA,floppy disk), always involves waves (EM, ...
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2answers
128 views

How does energy transfer between B and E in an EM standing wave?

I'm trying to understand how an electric field induces a magnetic field and vice versa, its associated energy, as well as relating it to my understanding of waves on a string. Using a standing wave ...
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1answer
241 views

What is the magnitude of the force on a charged particle due to electromagnetic radiation?

Suppose there is an electromagnetic wave moving forward in the $\mathbf{\hat{k}}$ direction. Its electric/magnetic field components are given by: $$\mathbf{E} = E_0 \sin(kz - \omega t) ...
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1answer
125 views

Explanation of photon reflection [duplicate]

What occurs in atomic scale that cause the photon to be reflected? In other words, what is the reason for photons to change its direction and why material can reflect certain wavelengths and absorb ...
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1answer
114 views

How light causes increase in temperature

Temperature is the measure of movements of atoms. So if something is said to have high temperature it means that its atoms are moving fast or have high KE energy. There are basically two ways heat ...
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1answer
82 views

Accelerated charge inside sphere (again!)

Sorry to go on about this scenario again but I think something is going on here. Imagine a stationary charge $q$, with mass $m$, at the center of a stationary hollow spherical dielectric shell with ...
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1answer
65 views

X-Ray/Gamma Ray shielding: density versus conductivity

When talking about gamma ray or x-ray propagation in media, we usually talk about the mass attenuation coefficient, and we desire high density materials for shielding. This seems probabilistic: we ...
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1answer
209 views

Classical blackbody radiation 'solution'

I never understood how the equipartition theorem was applied electromagnetic waves inside the metallic blackbody. As hyperphysics puts it ...
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1answer
353 views

Definition of the complex wavenumber

My syllabus of electromagnetism defines the complex wavenumber as: $$k = \omega\sqrt{\epsilon\mu}$$ with $\epsilon$ the complex permittivity and $\mu$ the complex permeability. Thus $\epsilon$ and ...
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2answers
340 views

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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1answer
81 views

How much photons are needed to erase a complete mountain? [closed]

I've heard that light does change our momentum a little bit which made me think: How much photons are needed to erase a complete mountain? That is to evaporate a complete mountain such as Himalaya for ...
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2answers
121 views

When light is only considered as a particle, is it still considersed to be oscillating electic and magetic waves?

I have my head around wave-particle duality, however people tend to refer to light as either a wave or a particle in different situations. If I were to consider light as a particle am I still ...
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1answer
85 views

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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2answers
77 views

Are there any known, non-spectroscopic effects of EM directly on Light?

Photons have no charge. Light is a form of electromagnetic energy. All spectroscopic effects (to my knowledge) are due to changes in electron state, induced either through an interior or exterior EM ...
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3answers
204 views

How do EM waves propogate?

I have read about this and what i seem to know is that when charged particles such as electron accelerate they produce time-varying electric fields. These E-fields produce H-fields and the process ...
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2answers
118 views

Max temperature that can be obtained from radiation source when nonlinear interaction with matter is important?

Using a black body radiation as furnace it is usually said that the max achievable $T$ is limited to the T of the source. So a source of 3000K can not be used to heat a body above 3000K. A long ...
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3answers
439 views

What causes atoms to have their specific colors?

I understand that light (color) is part of the electromagnetic spectrum, and that it depends on what wavelengths are reflected/absorbed. Though what property of an individual atom gives it its color? ...
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1answer
241 views

Why the electric bulb turns on almost instantly when the switch is closed? [duplicate]

The electron drift speed is estimated to be very low.How could there is current almost the instant a circuit is closed?? By the discussions it is known that The information about beginning of the ...
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2answers
47 views

How can I relate the energy of a gamma particle to electromagnetic radiation power?

I have a distinct feeling that dimensional analysis says these two (let's pick 1 MeV and +30dBm) can not be directly compared. What is the missing link between the two? I know one is energy and one is ...
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1answer
60 views

What are natural sources of longwave radiation

I am studying now the Earth radiation balance and I came across the question regarding the sources of the long-wave radiation on earth surface. The only source of theses wavelengths indicated in the ...
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1answer
111 views

Will light bend in a circle on its own?

I found this article and I didn't understand it. I did get that they were able to bend light to 360 degrees. Does that mean if take a box that is completely empty, and shine a light into it, it will ...
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53 views

why boundary condition in steady electric current?

when we electric field between two conductors in certain direction the current density should pass in its direction why current density direction change at boundary although the direction of electric ...
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0answers
80 views

Blackbody radiation

Looking at the radiation from the sun (T=5800K) I got a little surprise which I do not understand. I first calculated the energy density u and also the number of photons per unit volume ng. From ...
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1answer
60 views

Photonic. vs Plasmonic

I hear a lot about photonic and plasmonic structures being the future in many different applications, but what are the differences between them? Why would one want a material with both as opposed to ...
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2answers
117 views

accelerated charge in QED

Classical electromagnetism says an accelerated charge would radiate. Is this understood in QED? Is there QED derivation of Larmor's formula?
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Has advanced radiation been detected experimentally?

I would like to know whether there has been an experimental detection of advanced radiation. I seem to recall reading about such an experiment but I can't find any reference to it on the interwebs so ...
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3answers
715 views

Can the speed of light become complex inside a metamaterial?

The speed of light in a material is defined as $c = \frac{1}{\sqrt{\epsilon \mu}}$. There are metamaterials with negative permittivity $\epsilon < 0$ and permeability $\mu < 0$ at the same time. ...
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3answers
570 views

How can light carry data if light has no mass, and data has mass?

Via a packet-switched network, like the internet, data is sent as packets (bits) wirelessly via radio waves with Wi-Fi, or 802.11g, etc. What my question is is this: Radio waves are light; light has ...
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1answer
89 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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1answer
119 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
129 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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3answers
710 views

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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2answers
300 views

Electromagnetic Momentum

My book says : The fact that electromagnetic radiation of energy carried momentum was known from classical theory and from the experiments of Nichols and Hull in 1903. This relation is also consistent ...
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2answers
122 views

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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1answer
53 views

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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4answers
8k views

Phase shift of 180 degrees on reflection from optically denser medium

Can anyone please provide an intuitive explanation of why phase shift of 180 degrees occurs in the Electric Field of a EM wave,when reflected from an optically denser medium? I tried searching for it ...
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0answers
41 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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0answers
112 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 ...
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1answer
98 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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1answer
248 views

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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0answers
512 views

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 ...