Inquiring Minds


All About Light
All About Light Main Page  |  Classical  |  Relativistic  |  Quantum

Quantum - Wave or Particle? That Is the Question

Black Body  |  Photon Idea  |  Dual World  |  Photo Effect  |  About Photons
We are Dual!  |  Interference  |  Photon@fnal
 
On the previous page, I introduced Planck's solution of the black-body radiation puzzle. Energy is radiated out in particles called photons.

Why was everybody so confused?

As black stands to white, wet to dry, dark to light, so does PARTICLE to WAVE.

Particles and waves behave completely differently. Waves show interference phenomena, particles do not! So it must be clear, whether something is a particle or a wave, right?

Well, Planck questioned this statement and set the basis for QUANTUM physics. He suggested that every particle sometimes behaves as a wave. Also, the opposite is true:, every wave sometimes behaves as a particle. Our world has a dual nature. It was very difficult to admit this fact in the early years of the 20th century.

But as time passed, more and more experiments proved Planck's idea.

On the next page, I give one more example of experiments proving that Planck was right. I will introduce the photoelectric effect phenomena.
 

back       next


last modified 1/5/2001   email Fermilab