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In-plane wave vector of em wave

  1. Apr 26, 2012 #1
    We all know that the wave vector of a propagating plane electromagnetic wave indicates the direction of propagation. What does it mean by the "in-plane" wave vector of that plane wave?
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 28, 2012 #2
    Depends on the relation of the wave to a medium, interface or scattering geometry.

    in-plane almost certainly does not refer to the plane of constant phase of the wave, but to a plane of the rest of the problem.

    For example, if your wave is propagating inside a hexagonal crystal, in-plane will refer to the component parallel to the a-b planes of the crsytal (or perpendicular to the c-axis)
  4. May 5, 2012 #3
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