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There is a problem with equation E = h f

Discussion in 'Science and Technology' started by Unes, Feb 11, 2018.

  1. Unes

    Unes Active Member
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    A Problem with QED equation E = h f

    For the emission and the absorption of photons by atoms, QED relates the energies of photons to their frequencies by E = h f equation, and apparently in these cases the amplitude of the photons are irrelevant, but for the photons that are generated by the electronic circuitry the issue of photons’ amplitude should be considered differently, because
    Equation E = h f fails to differentiate the energy differences in AM radio signals and their carrier signals, so photon’s energy has to be related to its amplitude.

    This is baffling and perplexing, how could QED theory that it is empowering our amazing technologies harboring such flaws at its core foundation?

    The dual characteristic of photon has made its structure so ambiguous and so mysterious, that nobody understands its structure, isn’t it odd that its energy is defined with such a trivial equation?


    May God Bless Us All
     
  2. Jaiket

    Jaiket Well-Known Member

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    Do individual photons have amplitude?
     
  3. Unes

    Unes Active Member
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    The AM radio signal tells us they do.
     
    #3 Unes, Feb 11, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  4. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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    So, when were you going to alert the scientific community to this flaw? There's a Nobel calling with your name on it.
     
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  5. Polymath257

    Polymath257 Think & Care
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    No. Amplitude of electromagnetic waves is related to how many photons make up the wave.
     
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  6. Polymath257

    Polymath257 Think & Care
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    Nope. The photons themselves don't have amplitude. The amplitude is determined from how many photons are involved:the strength of the signal.
     
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  7. Unes

    Unes Active Member
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    Sir,
    We all understand that, but are you telling us that E = h f does not apply for the AM radio signals? And why not?
     
  8. Polymath257

    Polymath257 Think & Care
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    It applies to the individual photons of the signals. The amplitude moderation just changes the number of photons in the signal.
     
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  9. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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    How dare you bring science into this discussion!
    *grabs smelling salts*
     
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  10. Unes

    Unes Active Member
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    Sir,
    All the presentations that I have seen on the subject of AM signals, they do talk about how the amplitude is altered and manipulated. But what you are describing is the Fluctuation of the energy sent by the antenna. This does not jive with those presentations. If the Fluctuation of the energy is the case, then thank you for your inputs.
     
    #10 Unes, Feb 11, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  11. LegionOnomaMoi

    LegionOnomaMoi Veteran Member
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    AM radio, like all technology which relies on classical electromagnetism, runs on principles that fail to operate or retain any validity at small scales. Photons are fundamentally quantum-mechanical entities and have no place in any physical theory in which radio waves or any other electromagnetic phenomena exist. These are, like the point-particles of Newtonian physics, useful approximations. They fail utterly to describe the nature of reality in part because they do not allow for the existence of photons at all.
    QED, in which the theoretical structure of quantum mechanics is combined both with special relativity and Maxwell's equation, reconciles electromagnetism with modern physics via quantization in the framework of quantum field theory (QED is actually the first and most successful realization of quantum field theory, which is the foundation of the standard model of particle physics).
    In QED, photons are bosonoic mediators of EM forces and, because quantum fluctuations result in rapid changes in energy and therefore mass, are created and destroyed constantly. They are not well-defined.
    "Quantum electrodynamics was devised in 1927 by Dirac, less than a year after the Schrodinger equation appeared and before the Dirac equation for the relativistic electron had been invented. Once Schrodinger had shown how to apply quantum theory to a general dynamical system it was quite natural, at least for somebody smart, like Dirac, to apply it to the electromagnetic (EM) field as described by Maxwell's equations. For the first time since photons had appeared on the scene 27 years before (implicitly, in Planck's radiation formula), it became possible to say what a photon is. Let me tell you:
    ...The word "photon" is seen as a linguistic device to describe this particle-like character of the excitations of the EM field...photons hardly deserve the dignity of a noun. When you speak more correctly of different levels of excitation of the modes of the field the question of the identity of the photons becomes meaningless. They are truly faceless."
    Mills, R. (1993). Tutorial on Infinities in QED. In L. M. Brown (Ed.). Renormalization: From Lorentz to Landau (and Beyond) (pp. 58-85). Springer.
     
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  12. LegionOnomaMoi

    LegionOnomaMoi Veteran Member
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    In QED there are no individual photons. There are no single particles at all in relativistic QFT (and QED is a relativistic QFT) which is fundamentally a many-body theory.
    But yes, in a manner of speaking in QM individual "particles" have amplitude.
     
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  13. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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    [​IMG]
     
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  14. Polymath257

    Polymath257 Think & Care
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    The energy is directly related to the amplitude. As with most waves the energy density is proportional to the square of the amplitude.
     
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  15. YmirGF

    YmirGF Bodhisattva
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  16. LegionOnomaMoi

    LegionOnomaMoi Veteran Member
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    AM radio signals are classical phenomena. They tell us nothing really useful here. But for some novel views on light and photons that aren't fundamentally useless (but in some cases may be controversial or contentious), see below:
    The Nature of Light: What is a Photon?
     
  17. Unes

    Unes Active Member
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    Thank you LegionOnomaMoi,
    In QED "all-path" argument we do talk about a single photon, and we are told that there are equipment that generates one photon at a time. Your statement sounds when QED gets into trouble describing a phenomenon, it envisions a more complex theory and hoping the flaw of the issue washes away in the complexity of the new theory. And in this case dismissing the existence of individual particle. So, either those Experimentalists are falsely boasting the capability of their equipment, or the theorists are failing to produce a comprehensive theory that clearly explains those phenomenon. Science cannot have it both ways!
     
    #17 Unes, Feb 11, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2018
  18. sayak83

    sayak83 Well-Known Member
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    Very roughly:
    Total energy = (Amplitude)^2 = No. of incident photons × Energy of each photon.
    Where
    Energy of each photon = h × frequency of light.
     
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  19. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    A helpful word of advice. Polymath probably understands physics better than anyone else here. He is also very willing to explain concepts, if asked politely. Instead of assuming there is something wrong with the basic physics it might be wiser to assume that there is something wrong with your understanding. He can and almost certainly will help you.
     
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  20. LegionOnomaMoi

    LegionOnomaMoi Veteran Member
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    I'm not entirely certain what you mean to refer to here. If by "'all-path' argument" you mean the sum-over-all-paths approach to quantum theory better known as the (Feynman) path integral approach, then this is neither an argument nor relevant. Photon numbers are not in general well-defined in any theory, but in QED as in relativistic quantum field theory in general particle number is not only ill-defined generally it is not a conserved quantity.
    Often we do talk about single photons in various fields both within physics and in other sciences. Likewise, we speak of electromagnetic waves, of Newtonian gravity, of magnetic fields, and other things that are merely terms referring to useful concepts in theories we know either to be wrong or at best to be useful approximations. But when we speak of e.g., single-photons in e.g., reference to quantum control or quantum engineering or any number of other technologies which by their design detect single photons it is important to be aware of the fact that we do so not because we believe we have somehow made photon number a well-defined concept or produced experimental evidence against relativistic quantum theory. Rather, it is because the tools we use to prepare, measure, and manipulate physical systems are limited by their design. We can build devices to send and receive signals that we call radio waves and which we interpret and analyze using classical electromagnetism, just as we can analyze the collective behavior of molecules making up the ocean by speaking of water waves and acting as if these were indivisible, nonlocalized waves.
    When, however, we wish to speak in terms of what our best evidence and theories say about the world around us, and not in terms of useful approximations, then we must be more careful about how we speak. AM radio waves don't exist as more than at best descriptions of phenomena that are useful but break down at a particular level. Just as it can be useful to speak ocean waves rather than their molecular (or atomic) constituents, so to it is useful to speak of electromagnetic waves or even radio waves. But we know that ocean waves are composed of various molecules and we know that radio waves and electromagnetic radiation more generally are course descriptions of a very different underlying reality that can't be described by E & M.
    It is arguably the best theory in existence and the measurements obtained by QED are more accurate by far than those in any other field. It is certainly not troubled by perceived contradictions with AM radio waves.

    You seem also to be conflating quantum mechanics with QED. It is true that in quantum mechanics and when using certain devices for which classical E&M is not adequate it is convenient to refer to single photons which can be treated to a fair approximation in QM in which particle number at least is conserved (or in non-relativistic QFT and a semiclassical approach to electrodynamics).
    But the kind of talk one finds in textbooks, monographs, and so forth on quantum mechanics (let alone in popular accounts) concerning photons is usually reserved mostly to introduce the failures of classical theories and in particular Einstein's 1905 paper that described quanta of light.
    In reality, the descriptions of photons one encounters in texts on quantum mechanics (or in popular literature) are necessarily incomplete and known to be inadequate. Maxwell's equations concern fields, and quantum mechanics doesn't. Quantum mechanical descriptions of the dynamics of systems are not Lorentz invariant, and whatever else light is or is not, it is most certainly a relativistic phenomena. Quantum mechanical states are given by rays in Hilbert space even in non-relativistic QFT one must content with the infinite degrees of freedom required for the quantization of electromagnetic fields (whether one uses the Dirac equation and Fock space or path integrals or whatever).
    So-called "second quantization" or the extension of quantum theory to interactions (including e.g., the interaction of a photon with itself or an electron with its field) involves considerable difficulties that took many years and many great minds to overcome (or even to understand) and even graduate level texts on quantum mechanics will not generally include more than a hint of the problems QED solves such as the nature of light. Precisely because QED developed after we knew any fundamental physical theory must describe systems in a manner that incorporated time on an equivalent footing with space, nobody put that much work into trying to formulate a theory of electromagnetic radiation which relied on the classical phase spaces of point-particles. Actually, the original Schrödinger equation was a relativistic wave equation now known as the Klein-Gordan equation but Schrödinger rejected it because it yielded solutions which were untenable. But even the Dirac equation had similar issues. It wasn't until we had a better empirical basis for understanding "negative energy" states in and backward-timelike trajectories in terms of antiparticles like the positron (not to mention the extremely helpful Feynman diagrams, which enabled complicated mathematical terms to be pictorially depicted and analyzed) that we were better equipped to understand what the mathematical content of such equations implied physically.

    Finally, just as for many purposes one can use classical E&M to develop, design, and utilize a vast array of sophisticated technology, one can go beyond classical field theory without having to deal either with the more sophisticated tools of relativistic kinematics or (worse yet) relativistic QFT. But again, in doing so one must recognize that such uses are approximations.
    Experimentalists work with devices and experimental designs that are informed by theory and which yield results interpreted by theory. One speaks of electromagnetic waves or single-photon detection in experiments not because one believes experiments require or even support the existence to such phenomena as such. You can buy a magnet and use it to make certain things move without touching them, and we can speak of this in terms of magnetic attraction and magnetic fields, but this doesn't suddenly undo the work of 19th century physicists whose work culminated in the unification of electricity and magnetism into a single physical theory.
    In fact, the word "particle" in modern physics is something of an unfortunate tradition. Modern particle physics deals with unobservable interactions with unobservable and undetectable systems using a convenient, fictitious language and a correspondingly precise, rigorous mathematics.
    Particles like photons are terms used to describe groupings of patterns of results yielded by experiments/detectors appropriate to high-energy subatomic processes. Theory is required to make any sense out of the chaotic results of high-energy collisions or even tracks in cloud chambers. QED is such a theory, as is the standard model of particle physics which incorporates it. In this as in all such models, quantum mechanical descriptions require taking into account energy fluctuations and therefore particle creation and annihilation. The dynamics of such systems, when described relativistically, are given by equations in which single particles can't exist (the vacuum state is a many-body system). Already in quantum mechanics the problems with treating systems as isolated as in classical physics may be readily seen in the issues of nonseparability. But in relativistic quantum theory, one has to contend with the dissolution of even the fiction of single particles in principle.
     
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