Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Can all energy be seen?

  1. Sep 5, 2013 #1
    Particles emit and absorb light of certain quanta and various factors can then red or blue shift this energy. Does this mean light sometimes gets shifted into a frequency which is unable to be absorbed by any particle and therefore can longer be 'seen'? (At least until it is shifted further...)
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 5, 2013 #2


    Staff: Mentor

    It certainly is possible to red or blue shift light out of the visible spectrum.
  4. Sep 6, 2013 #3
    Of course. Although I am thinking about all em waves...
  5. Sep 6, 2013 #4


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    So you really want to know if there are EM waves that can't be blocked?
  6. Sep 6, 2013 #5


    Staff: Mentor

    Well if you are not specifically interested in the visible portion of the spectrum then a red shifted EM wave is still an EM wave. You cannot red or blue shift so much that it ceases to be an EM wave of some wavelength.
  7. Sep 6, 2013 #6


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    To my knowledge, no matter how long the wavelength there is still a small chance for an object to absorb a small part of its energy.
  8. Sep 7, 2013 #7


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    There is no frequency of EM that is undetectable. However, the power loss on long paths (for red shift to be relevant) will mean that detection gets increasingly difficult because the signal to noise ratio gets progressively worse.
    Different techniques are necessary / available for different frequencies and this may be relevant to detectability.
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Similar Discussions: Can all energy be seen?
  1. Energy is all ? (Replies: 3)

  2. All about energy! (Replies: 13)