Class 12 Physics Dual Nature Radiation Matter Photon Picture of Radiation

Photon Picture of Radiation:

  • Radiation can behave as a wave as well as a particle under different situations. And while interacting with matter, it behaves as a particle
  • Energy (E) of a photon is given by: E = hv = hc/λ

Here, v = frequency, λ = wavelength, c = speed of light, and h = Planck’s constant

  • Momentum (p) of a photon is given by: p = hv/c = h/λ

Here symbols have their usual meaning.

  • Photons of similar frequencies possess equal energies and equal momentums
  • Photons are electrically neutral (not having a net positive or negative charge)
  • In a photon-particle collision:
  1. Total energy remains constant
  2. Total momentum remains constant
  3. Total number of photons may or may not be constant.

The photoelectric effect proves the particle nature of radiation. Whereas, the phenomena like interference, diffraction, and polarization proves the wave nature of light. Hence, we can say that radiation displays both, wave nature, and particle nature, meaning a radiation possesses wave-particle dualism.

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