Where Does the Energy Go During Deconstructive Interference?

• wonderland
In summary, the conversation delves into the concept of deconstructive interference and its impact on energy. The speakers discuss the idea of negative energy and its relationship to positive energy within a system. They also touch on the concept of destructive interference and its role in transferring energy between different modes. The conversation ends with a mention of an experiment involving neutrons and their disappearance when interfering with themselves, causing confusion about their mass energy.
wonderland
right, um, deconstructive inteference; where does the energy go? [?]

It is my understanding that any wave entity oscillates between positive and negative. At a point of complete deconstructive interference, (+x)+(-x)=0, x being half the peak to peak energy difference. Statistically, there was no net energy in either wave in the first place.

Yer but it's like the whole notion of "negative" energy, I find it kinda confuddling

Originally posted by wonderland
Yer but it's like the whole notion of "negative" energy, I find it kinda confuddling

Perhaps it is a problem of trying to deal with the wave as an isolated identity. In a wave train, if two waves interfere destructively, then somewhere else along the way two other waves interfere constructively, do they not? As for negative energy, it is less confusing when viewed in context. According to the principle of quantum inequality, any amount of negative energy can only exist withtin or as a part of a system that contains a greater amount of positive energy. So the net energy is always positive.

In reference to there being a constructive inteference as well accounting for the lost energy, I suppose it would come down to an issue of time; so if you experimentally arranged it so that the waves inteferred deconstructively first, what has happened to the energy at that point in time, before the constructive superposition occurs? And in terms of negative energy, I thought a system could only be said to have negative energy when it's doing work.

In most wave iteractions the energy is transferred between two different modes. While one mode experiances a minimun the other is at a maximum. The modes of an Electromagnetic field are the electric field and the magnetic field. So while you are obseving a phenomena miniumn related to the electric field at the same time and same point in space the magnetic field is experianceing a maximum. So destructive interferance for one will be constructive for the other.

Wot about when it isn't transferred between different modes?

Long ago, like in the 60's, I read about an experiment where a beam of neutrons from a reactor was made to interfere destructively with itself. And according to the article the neutrons did cease to exist. And I too wondered, what happened to their mass energy?

Energy is so nebulous a concept that it never bugged me when deconstructive interference occured. But that neutrons do sometimes cease to exist when acting like waves, I find that baffling.

1. What is "Superfluous Superposition"?

"Superfluous Superposition" refers to the phenomenon in quantum mechanics where a quantum system can exist in multiple states or positions simultaneously, even though it may not be necessary for the system to do so.

2. How is "Superfluous Superposition" different from regular superposition?

Regular superposition occurs when a quantum system exists in multiple states at the same time, but each state has a specific physical significance. In "Superfluous Superposition", the extra states or positions do not have any physical significance and are therefore considered unnecessary or superfluous.

3. What causes "Superfluous Superposition" to occur?

"Superfluous Superposition" can be caused by decoherence, which is the interaction of a quantum system with its surroundings. This interaction can cause the quantum system to collapse into a single state, or it can allow for multiple states to coexist without any physical significance.

4. How is "Superfluous Superposition" relevant to real-world applications?

While "Superfluous Superposition" may seem like a purely theoretical concept, it has real-world applications in quantum computing and cryptography. By understanding and controlling superposition, scientists can develop more efficient and secure quantum technologies.

5. Can "Superfluous Superposition" be observed in everyday life?

No, "Superfluous Superposition" is a phenomenon that is only observed at the quantum level and cannot be observed in everyday life. However, its effects can be seen in certain phenomena such as quantum tunneling or the double-slit experiment.

• Optics
Replies
53
Views
7K
• Optics
Replies
2
Views
879
• Optics
Replies
13
Views
1K
• Optics
Replies
6
Views
2K
• Optics
Replies
7
Views
1K
• Optics
Replies
6
Views
1K
• Classical Physics
Replies
7
Views
981
• Optics
Replies
8
Views
4K
• Optics
Replies
49
Views
5K
• Quantum Physics
Replies
27
Views
3K