What is Light?

  • John N. Dodd
Part of the Physics of Atoms and Molecules book series (PIDF)


This book has taken a rather unusual course. I have tried to present the subject of how light (electromagnetic radiation) interacts with matter (electrons, atoms, and, by implication, with molecules and more complicated systems) without recourse to the more usual path which introduces the concept of the photon. “What a fool !”, I hear some people saying—but those are not likely to have bothered to read as far as this chapter. Nonetheless I believe it has been worthwhile attempting to do this for a number of reasons.


Angular Momentum Quantum Rule Reduce Matrix Element Ground State Atom Cascade Transition 


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  1. 1.
    Quantum Mechanics versus Local Realism, F. Seller! (Ed.) ( Plenum Press, New York, 1988 ).Google Scholar
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    A. Aspect, P. Grangier, J. Dalibard, and G. Roger, see the review “Experimental Investigation of the Einstein-Podolsky-Rosen Question and Bell’s Inequality,” by A. J. Duncan and H. Kleinpoppen in Ref. 1.Google Scholar
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    N. D. Mermin, “Is the Moon there when Nobody Looks? Reality and the Quantum Theory,” Physics Today 38, 38–47 (April 1985).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    D. T. Pegg, “Absorber Theory in Quantum Optics,” Phys. Scr. T12, 14–18 (1986).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    L. Bortolon (translated by C. J. Richards), The Life and Times of Leonardo ( Paul Hamlyn, London, 1968 ), p. 21.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • John N. Dodd
    • 1
  1. 1.University of OtagoOtagoNew Zealand

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