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2.1 Identify Planck’s hypothesis that radiation emitted and absorbed by the walls of a black body cavity is quantised

A black body is a theoretical object that absorbs all incoming radiation. Therefore it reflects no radiation and appears perfectly black. As all the radiation is absorbed, it heats the black body and it begins to radiate electromagnetic radiation. The black body is in equilibrium when the amount of incoming radiation equals that being radiated.

E = hf

E = energy(J) h = Planck’s constant = 6.63 x 10 -34 J s f = frequency (Hz)

A practical black body can be produced from a tungsten cylinder with a cavity and is heated by passing an electric current in it whilst it is in a vacuum. Radiation entered constantly reflects off the walls and so cannot escape.


The cavity X presents a black body Light is collected and analysed with a spectrometer which separates all the wavelengths and measures the intensity of radiation of particular wavelengths.

Energy quantised refers to energy associated with the oscillation of the atoms (electrons) which can only have energy values consistent with the equation E= hf. Quanta or packets of energy were absorbed or emitted only when an atom changed from one quantised energy level to a different quantised level, If atom did not change quanta levels it could neither absorb nor emit energy. Planck's explanation for the observations was a mathematical model which involved the radical idea that energy released by a hot object was due to oscillation of its atoms and energy could only be radiated or absorbed in small discrete amounts, later called quanta, now identified as photons rather than continuously as explained by classical physics. The size of each quantum of energy is characteristic of the frequency of light emitted. Consequently, energy would be exchanged between the equilibrium radiation field and the particles of the black body.

2 Identify Einstein’s contribution to quantum theory and its relation to black body radiation  Under the classical wave model of cncoaching. This was not consistent with the data and violated the principles of energy conservation so it became known as the UV catastrophe 2. Einstein’s contribution to quantum theory was that he used Planck‟s idea of quanta and named these packets of energy as photons and the energy of each photon is defined by E = hf. He explained the photoelectric effect with the particle model of light. however the Quantum particle model of light said that emission was frequency dependent. Einstein said the intensity of light depends on the amount of photons. Einstein’s contributions lead to the start of quantum mechanics. If the energy of photon is greater than the work function the additional energy will increase kinetic energy of the photoelectrons.   E = hf = W +E k Where E = photon energy W = work function Ek = kinetic energy(J) {KEmax = eVs)   This meant that light could be considered to be both a wave and a particle (photon). .com W:  Classical theory expects that shorter the wavelength greater the energy.Members of: M: 0415 920 183 E: info@cncoaching. Classical physics was unable to explain the photoelectric effect using the wave model of light. emission of electrons (from photoelectric effect) is independent of frequency. regardless of the intensity of the light. not the energy of the photons. the energy contained in the light photons must equal to or greater than the energy required to overcome forces holding electrons to surface. This is known as the work function. However Einstein explained the photoelectric effect by using Planck's idea of quanta. Below a certain frequency (the critical or threshold or cut-off frequency) no electrons were emitted. He used this to explain the photoelectric effect where an electron is freed from the surface of a metal. He assumed that light comes in little packets of energy he called photons. Photoelectrons are emitted at different velocities because of the different magnitude of KE they possess.