1. Not finding help here? Sign up for a free 30min tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Need clarification

  1. Aug 13, 2005 #1
    I'm reading a modern physics textbook, and have trouble understanding this sentence:
    "Oscillators in the cavity walls can interchange energy with standing waves in the cavity only in quanta of hf"
    What is meant by that?
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 13, 2005 #2
  4. Aug 13, 2005 #3

    James R

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    For "oscillators" read "atoms"; for "quanta" read "photons"; for "hf" read "energy hf, where f is the frequency".
  5. Aug 13, 2005 #4
    It means that for a fixed frequency, the energy exchange may only occur
    as integer multiples of hf, that is hf, 2hf, 3hf ...

    Note: The "walls" means the electrons or atoms or molecules of the walls.
    It could even mean other things. A quantum oscillator is anything that
    can be excited into a state of definit energy (frequency) like the vibrational
    states of a molecule.
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2005
  6. Aug 14, 2005 #5
    oh, i see~
    thanks! :)
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?

Similar Discussions: Need clarification