10 September 2015 Photon diffraction described by momentum exchange theory: what more can edge diffraction tell us?
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Abstract
Previous papers have presented an alternative picture for photon diffraction based on a distribution of photon paths through quantized momentum exchange with probabilities defined at the location of scattering, not the point of detection. This contrasted with the picture from classical optical wave theory that describes diffraction in terms of the Huygens-Fresnel principle and sums the phased contributions of electromagnetic waves at the location of detection to determine probabilities. This alternative picture was termed “Momentum Exchange Theory (MET),” replacing the concept of Huygens wavelets with photon scattering (positive and negative dispersions) through momentum exchange with the scattering lattice. MET assumes a momentum representation for diffracted particles and has been applied to several different optical diffraction experimental configurations. Straight edge diffraction has been a particularly revealing experimental configuration as it provides significant clues to the geometric parameters controlling exchange probabilities. Diffraction by an opaque disc is examined to provide further insight to negative (attractive) dispersions. This analysis indicates that the “diffraction force” is an integration of momentum exchange field interactions to derive an exchange probability at interaction points along the photon path – resembling aspects of the QED path integral formulation for particle interactions.
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Michael J. Mobley, "Photon diffraction described by momentum exchange theory: what more can edge diffraction tell us?", Proc. SPIE 9570, The Nature of Light: What are Photons? VI, 95700R (10 September 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2186353; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2186353
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