torsdag 25 augusti 2011

Are There Any Photons At All?

The idea of light as a stream of particles or photons has been questioned and still is:
  • Lamb: Only a comedy of errors and historical accidents led to its popularity among physicists and optical scientists.
  • Moret-Bailly: Quantum electrodynamics corrects miscalculations of classical electrodynamics, but by introducing the pseudo-particle "photon" it is the source of errors whose practical consequences are serious.
  • Xavier-Borg: "All these fifty years of conscious brooding have brought me no nearer to the answer to the question 'What are light quanta?' Nowadays every Tom, Dick and Harry thinks he knows it, but he is mistaken" (Einstein, 1951). Sixty more years have passed, theories have been revised and updated, new technologies have surfaced, and yet it seems that nobody has had the guts to tackle this challenging issue again. Scientists seem satisfied enough reciting the wave-particle duality.
In Mathematical Physics of Blackbody Radiation I analyse a wave model of radiation and derive Planck's law from a principle of finite precision computation as an alternative to Planck's original derivation based on particles or quanta.

The basic idea is that atomic or molecular vibrations of a radiating body must be coordinated to deliver a coherent signal, like a swarm of crickets oscillating in unison, and that the required coordination requires a certain temperature to be effective.

Radiation is in this perspective an emergent phenomenon resulting from coordinated in-phase oscillations by many atomic oscillators , and not as in a particle model the result of photons emitted by particles without phase coordination. '

Recall that many out-of-phase oscillators cancel each other and emit nothing.

The primitivism of the particle model of radiation as streams of photons, has made it very popular, but there is little scientific evidence that it describes physics better than phlogistons.

There is no reason that all observed phenomena of radiation including absorption, emission and transmission cannot be explained from wave mechanics without particles. This was the view of Schrödinger and the late Einstein.

See also the previous post: Light: Waves of Particles?

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