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

Electron behaving as a wave

  1. Oct 10, 2012 #1
    When we talk about electrons behaving as waves in motion, is it that the path of the motion of the electron is in a wave-like shape?
    Can one electron behave as a wave which has a width? If it does, then how is it possible?
    Wouldn't the wave having a width(3-dimensional width) imply that the electron needs to be at two places at the same time?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Oct 10, 2012 #2

    Matterwave

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    No, when we say electrons behaves as waves, we do not mean that they travel in zig-zag. They behave like waves because they exhibit wave-like behavior such as interference and diffraction.
     
  4. Oct 10, 2012 #3
    The wave doesn't move back and forth in a transverse direction. The wavelength has to do with the period in the longitudinal direction of the electron motion. The wave model of the electron has a complex phase which rotates around in angle (not a spatial angle, just a mathematical one). The phase is not observable and we only infer it through the appearance of interference patterns.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Electron behaving as a wave
Loading...