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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Photoelectric effect and variation of current?

Say a photon of frequency $\nu_1$ strikes the metal, and we have certain kinetic energy which is stopped by $V_{stop1}$. Now for frequency $\nu_2$ for same metal it will have $V_{stop2}$. Now ...
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2answers
127 views

How to interpret single photon interference when the two possible paths are different in length?

Here is my question. I struggle with the definition of single photon interference. Let’s assume we have a Michelson interferometer and the interference pattern we observe is a single photon result, ...
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1answer
103 views

If we go to space why isn't the temperature high? [duplicate]

We know that the temperature in space (which has vacuum) is low. If I go to space will I feel sweaty and hot or chilly? I think I will feel sweaty and hot because the radiation (UV, IR, etc) of the ...
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2answers
31 views

What is the maximum of information in a beam of light?

If I look at the space I can see the Andromeda Galaxy as a small dot in the sky. If I look through a telescope, I can see the spiral shape. If the saw right through a huge telescope, I could see a ...
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1answer
29 views

How does a photon drive out the electrons in a solar cell?

We know that solar cells work when a photon hits the n-type the photon's energy drives free the electrons in the n-type to generate a current. But we also know that when a photon hits the atoms it ...
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5answers
107 views

Is a single photon also a Maxwellian wave?

A photon is associated with the equations $h\nu$ and $\frac{hc}{\lambda}$. My book (Serway Modern Physics) says that Einstein explained the photoelectric effect by assuming that the classical ...
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1answer
223 views

Is a photon always in a state of superposition while traveling through space?

In the double-slit experiment, we emit a photon that is in a state of superposition (wave form) which travels through both slits to interfere with itself. When we measure which slit it went through, ...
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45 views

Photon: speed and mass

Is it correct to think that the speed of light does not depend on the speed of light source because photons have no mass, so they have no the kind of inertia that is associated with mass, so they can ...
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1answer
46 views

Why does a real/virtual photon interact only with charged particle?

A photon is the force carrier of an electromagnetic wave and it consists of an electric and a magnetic field propagating through space at the speed of light in vacuum. It exhibits wave-particle ...
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62 views

4-momentum of massless photons

The time component of a particle's 4-momentum is $$ E'=\frac{E-up}{\sqrt{1-u^2/c^2}}\tag{1} $$ Now suppose it is photons that you are observing from a system moving at $u$ on a line towards ...
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60 views

Can a laser work forever if constant electricity is provided?

Can a laser work forever if constant electricity is provided? If we take a laser and provide it with constant electricity will the reactions in the semiconductor generate photons forever?
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101 views

Why would the curvature in space-time attract photons which have zero mass? [closed]

I know that we are surrounded by dark matter, does the dark matter affects space time ???and I know the reason for gravity according to explanations in general relativity. But all the explanation ...
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Compton scattering vs. photoelectric effect

Say a photon hits some atom. What determines whether there will be a photoelectric effect (photon is absorbed, electron is released) or whether there will be a Compton scattering (the photon is ...
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2answers
982 views

Slowing down light in an opaque crystal for a whole minute

I just read about a team of physicists at the University of Darmstadt, Germany, that managed to completely slow down a beam of light that traveled through an opaque crystal (article here). How is it ...
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1answer
56 views

How can electromagnetic waves be affected by gravity if photons have no mass? [duplicate]

I have found answers that say that gravity interferes with the oscillating electric and magnetic fields of the waves and others that say that since gravity is a bend in space-time, in which case the ...
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5answers
2k views

Producing photons with same frequency, different amplitude wave [duplicate]

I don't understand how two photons of the same frequency can have different amplitudes, neither how to produce them. I know that classically the square of the amplitude is proportional to the energy, ...
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2answers
189 views

Do virtual photons have a frequency?

Real photons do have frequencies, which is directly related to its energy. So, can virtual photons that take part in EM interactions have frequencies too? When my hand is pressed up against a glass ...
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1answer
33 views

Sound waves and chromism?

I am definitely not a physicist, but I have a question related to Physics so I thought I'd give it a try. Please excuse my ignorance. :) I am somewhat familiar with the changes in color caused by ...
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5answers
372 views

Local EPR-experiments with photons in vacuum?

The principle of non-locality states "that an object is influenced directly only by its immediate surroundings." (Wikipedia) When two entangled particles are measured in an EPR experiment, we ...
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0answers
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How much energy does a PV cell need to work?

How much energy does a $1m^2$ photovolatic/solar cell need to work? Can it work using a bunch of Laser lights? Edit: Ok so this PV cell is $1m^2$ is dimesions. The N-type has silicon doped with ...
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1answer
20 views

Distinguishing between perfect rigid mirror and symmetrical universe

I have a relatively bizarre question which I'm not even fits into the category of mainstream physics, but here I go anyway. I want to consider two hypothetical situations. Then I want to see if there ...
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1answer
69 views

How do solar panels generate infinite electricity?

We know that solar cells generate electricity utilizing the energy of the photon, but how can they generate electricity forever? In a n-type terminal we have the bond of silicon and phosphorous so ...
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1answer
433 views

Have they really photographed light behaving both as a particle and a wave?

I just came across this article where they are claiming that they have photographed light behaving both as a wave and a particle! The paper has been published in Nature Communications and I read the ...
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2answers
94 views

How can a photon have energy when its mass is zero? [duplicate]

How can a photon have energy when its mass is zero? According to Einstein's equation $E = mc^2$ energy depends on $mass*c^2$ Light has zero mass so the energy would be zero too but solar cells use ...
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0answers
29 views

Photon propagator integral [closed]

I have a problem on my QFT homework where I need to find the expectation value of a Wilson loop (for photons) and in the process, I found that I need to evaluate the following integral. $$\int ...
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2answers
101 views

If photon-photon interactions are impossible, how are higher harmonics generated?

In nonlinear optics, it is a rather common process to use nonlinear materials to produce higher harmonics of an incident wave. About the mechanism of the generation of such higher harmonics, it is ...
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1answer
357 views

Why can't Compton scattering happen in leading order of perturbation theory?

Why is the matrix element of Compton scattering in leading order of perturbation theory equal to zero? Why can this process only be described in second order of perturbation theory, i.e. with exchange ...
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2answers
71 views

Selection rule $\Delta S=0$: Why does a photon not interact with an electrons spin?

When talking about selection rules in atomic physics, many books state that the photon interacts with the electrons angular momentum such that that $\Delta l=\pm 1$. Absorbed/emitted photons exchange ...
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1answer
44 views

Do photons emitted from a LED show bunching?

If photons are emitted from a thermal source, we get photon bunching. For coherent radiation, the detection probability doesn't change after detecting a photon. For single photon sources, we get ...
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1answer
59 views

Probability of photon emission

If a photon of a given wavelength is absorbed by an electron (for simplicity, let's assume the electron has only one excited state), does the probability that the electron jumps to its excited state ...
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1answer
77 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 ...
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1answer
121 views

Taking photos without photons?

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

Recoil from a photon gun

Suppose you have a laser gun or a gun that shoots high frequency photons. Now according to Newton's laws there should be an equal and opposite reaction. So the question is - Will there be a recoil ...
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1answer
1k views

Signal-to-noise ratio of the difference between two signals

Something tells me this must be a fairly simple question, but I have somehow been unable to find an answer to it. In short: I need to calculate the difference between two signals, A and B, each one of ...
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1answer
24 views

Photoelectric effect and work function relation

Let's consider the graph above for two metals $M_1$ and $M_2$ showing relation between photocurrent and potential. First question that I want to ask here is that how do you relate stopping ...
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298 views

Do two photons traveling in opposite directions emit gravitational waves?

Do two photons traveling in opposite directions emit gravitational waves? If so, does it mean that any volume filled with photon gas will eventually degrade into graviton gas? In other words, if flat ...
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2answers
117 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 ...
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0answers
47 views

Do solar panels work forever?

Do solar panels generate electricity infinitely? IF YES then how do the electrons in the n-type which go to p-type then how do those electrons restore themselves. I mean in n-type terminal we have the ...
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1answer
92 views

Does a normal torch emit entangled photons?

I was reading a sciencenews.org post about three photons being entangled. My question here is, why is the chance of producing an entangled pair once in a billion times? Isn't every particle produced ...
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0answers
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Energy-level choice for electron at photon emission [duplicate]

An electron absorb a photon and jumps to the last energy level.Now when it goes done,How does it choose which level it will step down to?.Also I've come to now that it can omit one step(e.g from 5th ...
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3answers
54 views

Moving objects using light

Photon do not have mass but they have momentum, can we use laser to pick up golf ball and hurl it several yards away without burning it into crisp?
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2answers
118 views

Describing a single photon with creation and annihilation operators

Since I am not fully aware of the creation and annihilation operator formalism for single photons, I want to ask, if the following is correct: I am considering a photon in the vacuum which travel ...
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2answers
81 views

Does a photon travel in all directions?

For example i am standing and a beam of light is passing in front of me. I am able to see that beam of light so does it mean that photons are travelling in all directions other than the photons which ...
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5answers
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Is coherent light required for interference in Young's double slit experiment?

In this Veritasium video, a home experiment is presented which appears to produce a very good double-slit interference pattern with normal sunlight. The experiment is an empty cardboard box with a ...
43
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3answers
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Why doesn't light affect a compass?

In our daily life a lot of photons of visible light, infrared and radio etc move around us. We know that light is an electromagnetic radiation. So why doesn't that electromagnetic radiation affect a ...
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3answers
99 views

Why can't light escape a blackhole? [duplicate]

Gravity attracts objects which have mass right. We know that light is massless so why does a black hole's gravity attract light?
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2answers
153 views

Isn't the Coulomb interaction a photon interaction between two charges?

Isn't the Coulomb interaction a photon interaction between two charges? if yes then what does the following text mean? (Many-particle Physics by Gerald D. Mahan.)
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2answers
64 views

How does light oscillate?

Why do we say that electromagnetic wave is oscillating? Or does light propagate really in a wavy form like this image? What is making the photons oscillate and how is it oscillating is it ...
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1answer
110 views

I want to know why light even moves at all.

Never mind in a vacuum, why and how does light even move at all? What propels it?
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123 views

In $1$-dimensional space, how would the gravity generated by an electron affect a photon moving away from the electron if the photon can’t slow down?

Suppose we had a universe obeying the same physical laws as our own. But it had only one spatial dimension (represented by the $x$ axis) and it was totally empty. There are just two point-like ...