The photon is the quantum of the electromagnetic four-potential, and therefore the massless bosonic particle associated with the electromagnetic force, commonly also called the "particle of light". Use this tag for questions about the quantum-mechanical understanding of light and/or electromagnetic ...

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6answers
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Why can't we see light travelling from point A to B?

Lets say we have a cloud of dust which is a lightyear across and someone shoots a beam of light from point A to B , why it is not possible for an observer far far away to see the light while it ...
0
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1answer
18 views

Recreating an image from a photometer or similar light-detecting device?

I'm thinking if it is possible to recreate an image from data from this kind of device. It is known analog signals theoretically have infinite resolution, but since we use them in discrete systems ...
4
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2answers
66 views

Quantum electron and field interactions

What is the proper way to consider the electric field generated by an electron wavefunction governed by the Schrodinger equation? Can you get a result that would match observation, or is this a ...
0
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2answers
98 views

Why are electrons alike but photons not?

Perhaps this is a misconception, but why are electrons alike and photons not? Given two photons, they may differ by having different frequencies (energies). Given two electrons, there are just two ...
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0answers
35 views

Can pair production be used to explain the EM Drive? [on hold]

My understanding of the EM Drive: LOTS of energy and a little light is input into the system. A tiny amount of force is then exerted out of the system. Can this system be explained simply through ...
1
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2answers
76 views

Magnetism and Photons

Knowing that magnetic field is made from photons. Where does a magnet gets it's photons from to create a magnetic field. Are the photons created within the magnet, or does the magnet capture photons ...
1
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2answers
83 views

Photoelectric effect intensity

I understand the PE effect quite well but I'm failing to understand one thing. Intensity is the amount of energy per second incident to a given area. So can you can increase the intensity by either ...
0
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1answer
47 views

Light changes wavelength in the presence of gravity, can the quantum theory of gravity explain this?

If light changes wavelength in the presence of a gravitational field, how can this be described by the quantum theory of gravity?
0
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2answers
44 views

will osmium or lead stop all high-energy photons in a shorter distance?

I remember seeing a similar question to this one on Physics StackExchange once. Most of the answers were to the effect of "I don't like the way this question is phrased, so I will insult your ...
1
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1answer
56 views

Can a photon excite an electron via the uncertainty principle?

An electron is trapped in an infinite well potential with a width of $\Delta x$. A photon of wavelength $\lambda $ < $\Delta x$ is fired at the electron and misses or rather they don't interact. ...
1
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1answer
55 views

How are photons effected by gravity? [duplicate]

If we use E=m²c⁴+p²c², and we know mass of photon is zero, and they have momentum but why aren't they affected by gravity.
3
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2answers
165 views

Explain the notion of light/electromagnetic waves/photons to a non-physicist

A non-physicist asked me about special relativity. My explanations naturally were based on gedankenexperiments involving light. This forced the question: "What is light? It is particles, isn't? Or is ...
17
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5answers
2k views

Can a photon get emitted without a receiver?

It is generally agreed upon that electromagnetic waves from an emitter does not have to connect to a receiver, but how can we be sure this is a fact? The problem is that we can never observe non ...
5
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2answers
730 views

Do photons have relativistic mass?

I am conducting research on photons and was wondering if they have relativistic mass. I already know that they they have zero rest mass. Any answers are welcome!
-1
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0answers
30 views

Parallel-Perpendicular Polarizer [closed]

I am looking for group of material that behaves according to the following: (1) When a certain laser light passes perpendicular to the surface of the material it enters and exits unimpeded ...
0
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0answers
30 views

Can we see the photon sphere from outside? [duplicate]

This question came to my mind when i saw the movie interstellar. In the movie there is a scene with a black hole and a sphere of light around it, what i assume to be the photon sphere. You can see it ...
-2
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0answers
36 views

The movement with the speed of light [duplicate]

Light moves at $3\times 10^8$ m/s, but is this speed always so?, imagine if I am in a dark room that is $1$ light year long and I am standing at one extreme end of the room, and there is a powerful ...
28
votes
6answers
4k views

Can the photoelectric effect be explained without photons?

Lamb 1969 states, A misconception which most physicists acquire in their formative years is that the photoelectric effect requires the quantization of the electromagnetic field for its ...
0
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2answers
53 views

How does a Black hole attract light? [duplicate]

Please no hate for lack of knowledge: I am somewhat fascinated with the subject of black holes. However, I do not understand a concept which is constantly attributed with black holes: that a black ...
2
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0answers
194 views

Taking photos without photons? [closed]

I was looking up some science news and I came across this! Blind quantum camera snaps photos of Schrödinger’s cat ...
13
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4answers
2k views

What if photons are not the fastest particles?

Einstein originally thought that special relativity was about light and how it always travelled at the same speed. Nowadays, we think that special relativity is about the idea that there is some ...
0
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1answer
101 views

Is the wobbly rope depiction of a radio wave inherently wrong? And how do vectors of parallel waves align with each other?

I don't have a scientific education, yet I'm scientifically curious. Among other things, I'm struggling to understand the nature of electromagnetic waves. What I have recently realized is that the ...
1
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2answers
184 views

Quantum Eraser thought experiment with light photons of distinct color

I tried to recreate the Quantum Eraser experiment into a thought experiment with a few changes. It left me a little perplexed as to what outcomes I should expect. Any help would be appreciated. Lets ...
1
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1answer
4k views

Finding the maximum kinetic energy of any photoelectrons?

An incident photon, $f=5.5\times 10^{14}\ Hz$, hits a metal with a work function of $2.8\ eV$. How do I find the maximum kinetic energy of any photo-electrons? I'm confused exactly how to do this, ...
2
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1answer
247 views

Color of a Metal's Threshold Wavelength?

How do I find the color of the threshold wavelength if the metal has a threshold wavelength of $\mathrm{6.5\times 10^{-7}m}$? I know that converts down to $\mathrm{650\ nm}$, but can I still use the ...
2
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1answer
61 views

Color of an incident photon?

If the incident light at 360nm causes photoemission of electrons, wouldn't the color be ultraviolet? I know that it isn't a visible color, but that's what my chart of the light spectrum says. Unless ...
7
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2answers
127 views

If photons don't “experience” time, how do they account for their gradual change in wavelength?

It is often said that photons do not experience time. From what I've read, this is because that when travelling at the speed of light, space is contracted to infinity, so while there is no time to ...
0
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0answers
28 views

Photon's behavior from 1-dimensional realm to 3-dimensional realm

I know that photon's behavior can be fully analyzed (or at least a solid theoretical explanation is present, see molecular QED book) when the photon is emitted and absorbed by same dimensional ...
14
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3answers
4k views

The exchange of photons gives rise to the electromagnetic force

Pardon me for my stubborn classical/semiclassical brain. But I bet I am not the only one finding such description confusing. If EM force is caused by the exchange of photons, does that mean only when ...
14
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5answers
2k views

Difference between spin and polarization of a photon

I understand how one associates the spin of a quantum particle, e.g. of a photon, with intrinsic angular momentum. And in electromagnetism I have always understood the polarization of an EM wave as ...
0
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0answers
53 views

Size and energy of a photon

I would like to ask the opinion of some expert regarding the concept of the egergy and size of a photon in correlation with the redshift effect. I have seen very complex demostration trying to explain ...
3
votes
1answer
85 views

Can I catch a single photon with webcam's CMOS or CCD sensors?

I thought it would be nice to capturing single photons using a webcam's sensor due to simplicity. I've read that ccd and cmos sensors have a certain percent of quantum efficiency. What about ...
1
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1answer
50 views

Gravitational “acceleration” and frequency change of a photon?

For massive particles, force translates into acceleration which again is a change of the velocity vector in direction and/or magnitude. For a photon, the velocity magnitude cannot change, only the ...
2
votes
5answers
265 views

Is it possible that galaxies' redshift is caused by something else than the expansion of space?

I was thinking that maybe photons loss energy naturally when they travel great distances. Or maybe the mass of all matter is increasing over time and therefore photons emitted in the past are ...
2
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1answer
112 views

How can the 'choice' of a photon said to be delayed?

My question arises from two ideas that seem to be contradictory. Idea One: Wheeler's Delayed Choice experiment is an interesting variation of the double slit experiment. Idea Two: In the "reference ...
0
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0answers
21 views

Break time-reversal symmetry in photonic system without using bias magnetic field

In photonic system, e.g, photonic crystals, people usually use ferromagnetic material or so called Tellegen medium which acts as effective field bias to break the time-reversal symmetry. I just want ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

How is light slowing down in a medium thought of in the photon picture? [duplicate]

The speed of light in any medium besides vacuum is smaller than $c$. In a classical way, I just look at that as a wave that propagates less fast, the change in EM-field is passed on slower. How should ...
1
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1answer
72 views

Is the Energy of an absorbed photon exactly the energy of the band gap?

I was wondering, if the Energy of a Photon which is absorbed by an Electron, hast to be exactly the Energy of the bound gap. So if i have two energy levels in an atom $E_2$ and $E_1$, does my ...
2
votes
1answer
90 views

How can radiation be a transverse wave? Does light really resemble a rope? How can a 3D field be a medium for non-spatial 1D waves? Need mental model

I understand longitudinal waves. For example, I've got a clear mental modal of air waves: a slice of air becomes overcompressed, then the slice next to it becomes overcompressed and the first slice ...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

Question about electron-hole pair generation in depletion layer for a p-n junction photodiode

At the heart of operation of p-n (or p-i-n) junction photodiodes is the absorption of photons leading to generation of electron-hole pairs. If the diode is, e.g., reverse biased, then the motion of ...
1
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2answers
87 views

How does a photon leave trace of its polarization state in a photon detector but not trace of which direction it came in?

Some quantum erasure experiments involve polarization of photons. In one such experiment with a double slit, a horizontal polarizer is used in front of one slit, and a vertical polarizer is used for ...
0
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0answers
27 views

Does the entropy of the universe change as expansion exceeds the speed of light?

The potential encoded information in a photon that is at the edge of the observable universe would seem to be lost as the universe expands. Does that loss of information contribute to the overall ...
1
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1answer
50 views

What could cause a diode laser to be emitting the half-harmonic of the fundamental frequency?

I have a 405nm laser which is seemingly outputting a small portion of 810nm light. I am wondering what mechanism this could be caused by. Is this a down-conversion phenomenon or perhaps just another ...
0
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4answers
113 views

Can a photon have little to no energy and/or speed?

Can a photon move more slowly than the speed of light and behave 'non-relativistically,' so to speak. Perhaps another way to express my thought is: could we stop a photon from moving?
0
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1answer
45 views

Brightness of light sources

I would like to know what determines the brightness of light.I'm confused,After hours of reading i got these definitions mixed up i need to link them together : Light intensity Brightness of light ...
1
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1answer
49 views

Why doesn't light vibrate in-situ?

Light always moves in a straight geodesic path (shortest distance between 2 points in flat space where gravity is homogeneous) across 3 dimensions of space and 1 dimension of time. It is consists of a ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Why does the Sun feel hotter through a window?

I have this big window in my room that the Sun shines through every morning. When I wake up I usually notice that the Sunlight coming through my window feels hot. Much hotter than it normally does ...
0
votes
1answer
86 views

What happens to theoretical physics if a photon has non-zero mass?

I want to know the theoretical implication if photons have a non-zero mass. What happens to the Maxwell equations? What happens to QFT? If the photon have mass it can decade?
0
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0answers
38 views

Photon Energy and Einstein Equation $E=mc^2$ [duplicate]

If the mass of a photon is zero and these ones travel to the light speed, how may I explain Einstein's equation $E=mc^2$? It is well known that the energy associated to a photon may be calculated ...
4
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5answers
211 views

What about a surface determines its color?

Light falls on a surface. Some wavelengths get absorbed. The other are reflected. The reflected ones are the colors that we perceive to be of the surface. What is the property that determines, what ...