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On a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light

On a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light

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Published by Evan
The paper, "On a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light", proposed the idea of energy quanta. This idea, motivated by Max Planck's earlier derivation of the law of black body radiation, assumes that luminous energy can be absorbed or emitted only in discrete amounts, called quanta.
The paper, "On a Heuristic Viewpoint Concerning the Production and Transformation of Light", proposed the idea of energy quanta. This idea, motivated by Max Planck's earlier derivation of the law of black body radiation, assumes that luminous energy can be absorbed or emitted only in discrete amounts, called quanta.

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Categories:Types, Research, Science
Published by: Evan on Dec 27, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial

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01/23/2013

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U.S.
copyright
law
(title
17 of 
U.S.
code)
governs
the
reproduction
and
redistribution
of 
copyrighted
material.
 
THE
OLD
QUANTUM
THE0
Copyright
@
1967
Pergamon
Press
Ltd.
First edition
1967
Library
of
Congress Catalog Card
No.
66-29628
BY
D.
TER
HAAR
University Reader in Theoretical Physics and 
F
ellow
of 
Magdalen
College, Oxford 
 Printed in Great Britain
 by
Blackie
&
Son
Ltd. Bishopbriggs,
Glasgow
This book is sold subject to the conditionthat it shall not, by way
of
trade, be lent,resold, hired out, or otherwise disposed
of
without the publisher’s consent,in any form
of
binding or coverother than that in whichit is published
(3046/67)
PERSAMON
PRESS
OXFORD
*
LONDON EDINBURGH NEW YORKTORONTO
*
SYDNEY
*
PARIS
*
BRAUNSCHWEIG
 
3
On
a
Heuristic Point
of
View
aboutthe
Creatidn
and Conversion
of
Light?
A.
E
I
N
STE
I
N
THERE
exists an essential formal difference between the theoreticalpictures physicists have drawn of gases and other ponderablebodies and Maxwell’s theory
of 
electromagnetic processes inso
-
called empty space. Whereas we assume the state of a body tobe completely determined by the positions and velocities of an,’albeit very large, still finite number
of 
atoms and electrons, we usefor the determination of the electromagnetic state in space con
-
tinuous spatial functions,sothat a finite number of variablescannot be considered to be sufficient to fix completely the electro
-
magnetic state in space. According to Maxwell’s theory, theenergy must be considered to be a continuous function in spacefor all purely electromagnetic phenomena, thus also for light,while according to the present-day ideas of physicists the energyof a ponderable body can be written as a sum over the atoms andelectrons. The energy of a ponderable body cannot be split intoarbitrarily many, arbitrarily small parts, while the energy
of 
alight ray, emitted by a point source
of 
light is according toMaxwell’s theory (or in general according to any wave theory) of light distributed continuously over an ever increasing volume.functions in space has been excellently justified for the representa
-
tion
of 
purely optical phenomena and it is unlikely ever to bereplaced by another theory. One should, however, bear in mindthat optical observations refer to time averages and not
to
The wave theory
of 
light which operates with continuous
6
?Ann.
Physik
17,
132
(1905).
91

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