Electron tunneling and classic electrdynamics.

In summary, Tunelling phenomena occurs in all kind of wave problems, its a region where there is no wave propagation but a decay like solution. For example you could have overhearing between two optical fibers when distance between is around the wavelength of the light. You could see it as the "particle" photon tunnels (classically forbidden) in analogy with an electron that tunnels. Also light and acoustic waves could be confined and quantized, its called resonance modes, where the frequency is quantized. Take that frequency and multiply with Planck's constant and you get an energy. When you say overhearing does that mean actual crossover of photons?? It would seem that statistically the exchange would be reciprocal so how do they
  • #1
Austin0
1,160
1
Hi
Supposing that someone had come up with the hypothese of electron tunneling before the discoveries and mathematical structure of QM... Solely within the Maxwell-Lorentz mathematical structure :
1) Could it have been proven that tunneling was impossible ??

2) Could it have been predictably quantified? Probabilities of occurence calculated for ranges of energy levels , ranges of potential barrier penetration for energy levels etc.

My knowledge of electrodynamics is totally insufficient to have any real idea so I am hoping that someone who knows both classic and QM might have some kind of answer available.
Thanks
 
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  • #2
Austin0 said:
Hi
Supposing that someone had come up with the hypothese of electron tunneling before the discoveries and mathematical structure of QM... Solely within the Maxwell-Lorentz mathematical structure :
1) Could it have been proven that tunneling was impossible ??

2) Could it have been predictably quantified? Probabilities of occurence calculated for ranges of energy levels , ranges of potential barrier penetration for energy levels etc.

My knowledge of electrodynamics is totally insufficient to have any real idea so I am hoping that someone who knows both classic and QM might have some kind of answer available.
Thanks

Tunneling phenomena occurs in all kind of wave problems. Its a region where there is no wave propagation but a decay like solution. For example you could have overhearing between two optical fibers when distance between is around the wavelength of the light. You could see it as the "particle" photon tunnels (classically forbidden) in analogy with an electron that tunnels.

Also light and acoustic waves could be confined and quantized, its called resonance modes, where the frequency is quantized. Take that frequency and multiply with Planck's constant and you get an energy!
 
  • #3
per.sundqvist said:
Tunneling phenomena occurs in all kind of wave problems. Its a region where there is no wave propagation but a decay like solution. For example you could have overhearing between two optical fibers when distance between is around the wavelength of the light.

This is known as frustrated total internal reflection and can be observed by placing two very flat glass plates very close together without actually touching.
 
  • #4
jtbell said:
This is known as frustrated total internal reflection and can be observed by placing two very flat glass plates very close together without actually touching.
Hi Although this is far from my original question it is a fascinating topic and new to me.

I am unclear on the conservation of energy regarding the evanescent wave that passes the diffraction barrier. Does this simply mean that
1) a photon that would have been reflected is now in the second medium with a loss of one photons energy from the reflected total in the first plate
or does it mean that
2) the evanescent energy that would have simply dissipated is now an active photon??

I would normally assume number 1) but with QM I am not so sure.
Also I am curious whether the evanescent wave that is presumed present even if a second plate is not, is something that is empirically detectable or is it just a theoretical assumption?
Thanks
 
  • #5
per.sundqvist said:
Tunneling phenomena occurs in all kind of wave problems. Its a region where there is no wave propagation but a decay like solution. For example you could have overhearing between two optical fibers when distance between is around the wavelength of the light. You could see it as the "particle" photon tunnels (classically forbidden) in analogy with an electron that tunnels.

Also light and acoustic waves could be confined and quantized, its called resonance modes, where the frequency is quantized. Take that frequency and multiply with Planck's constant and you get an energy!

Hi
When you say overhearing does that mean actual crossover of photons??
It would seem that statistically the exchange would be reciprocal so how do they detect the phenomenon?
When you said classically forbidden does that imply yes to 1) of my original question and no to 2) ?
Thanks for your responce you have given me some new and interesting subjects to explore.
 

Related to Electron tunneling and classic electrdynamics.

1. What is electron tunneling?

Electron tunneling is a quantum phenomenon in which electrons can pass through potential barriers that would be impossible according to classical mechanics. This is possible because of the wave-like nature of electrons, which allows them to exist in multiple places at the same time.

2. How does electron tunneling differ from classical electrodynamics?

Classical electrodynamics is based on classical mechanics and describes the behavior of macroscopic objects. On the other hand, electron tunneling is a quantum phenomenon that occurs at the microscopic level, and cannot be explained by classical electrodynamics.

3. What are the applications of electron tunneling?

Electron tunneling has many practical applications, such as in scanning tunneling microscopes, transistors, and tunnel diodes. It is also used in data storage devices, such as hard drives and flash drives.

4. How does temperature affect electron tunneling?

At higher temperatures, the movement of electrons increases, making it more difficult for them to tunnel through potential barriers. This results in a decrease in the rate of electron tunneling. At very low temperatures, however, electron tunneling can occur more easily.

5. Can electron tunneling violate the laws of thermodynamics?

No, electron tunneling does not violate the laws of thermodynamics. While it may seem like energy is being transferred without any input, the process of electron tunneling still follows the laws of conservation of energy and the second law of thermodynamics.

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