Thread: Light & Sight
View Single Post
Feb15-12, 06:13 AM
Drakkith's Avatar
P: 11,884
Quote Quote by John15 View Post
Quote Drakkith
This is similar to why sound waves do not normally interfere and keep you from hearing the speakers in your TV.

Of course enougth speakers playing different sounds from different directions and all you get would be noise.
You might get sensory overload and be unable to distinguish the sounds, but the waves would not necessarily be interfering with each other enough to be noticeable.
So could it be said then that light travels as a wave but collapses to particle like on observation/ detection.

Wavelength determines colour and energy is linked to wavelength so how does amplitude work? Would I be right in thinking that amplitude enables the wave to carry more energy per wave i.e 2x amplitude gives twice energy or similar to 2 waves travelling in partnership.
It depends on how you are viewing the EM Radiation. For example, radio waves can be thought of as actual waves and the amplitude as a direct increase in the signal strength. However when talking of individual photons this no longer works. The energy of the photon would be E=hv, where h is Planks constant and v is the frequency.

Finally, I think, waves in 3d must propagate outwards spherically, as sphere grows energy should be spread out the same way a balloon gets thinner as its blown up, so taking the sun as source by the time light reaches earth we have a sphere with a radius of over 90 million miles, how does light maintain its integrity when spread out over such an area?
Again, it depends on how you are looking at the light. As a wave model the light simply spreads out like any wave does and the intensity of the light drops off as distance from the emitting objects increases. In terms of photons, the Sun emits uncountable numbers of photons which then move straight out away from the Sun. The intensity drops off as distance increases because the photons spread out into space, similar to birdshot from a shotgun spreading out in the air. The energy of each photon is set and does not change and the photon does not spread out as it travels.