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Energy and momentum imparted by an EM wave

  1. Mar 25, 2016 #1

    Titan97

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    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data
    A plane electromagnetic wave is incident on a material surface. The wave delivers a momentum ##p## and energy ##E##. Then which of the following is/are correct?

    1) ##p=0,~E=0##
    2) ##p\neq 0,~E=0##
    3) ##p=0,~E\neq 0##
    4) ##p\neq 0,~E\neq 0##

    2. Relevant equations

    None

    3. The attempt at a solution
    Is the answer (4)? When an em wave hits a surface, the electrons in it will start moving because of the electric field component. So it gets a momentum and some energy.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 26, 2016 #2

    Simon Bridge

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    Note:
    If the question said that the wave delivers pizza P and Beer B then the correct statement would be ##P\neq 0, B\neq 0## ... it does not say how the wave delivers these things, perhaps it pushes a levitating train loaded with beer and pizza(?) - but that does not matter for the question as it is written.
     
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