Thomas Young conducted experiments with light and concluded that it was a wave.There are only two forces in the world, the sword and the spirit. In the long run, the sword will always be conquered by the spirit. - Napoleon Bonaparte
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Young's Double Slit Experiment

 

Young's Double Slit Experiment
Young's Double Slit Experiment

 

 

Thomas Young (1773 - 1829) performed an experiment which provided convincing evidence that light was a wave. Young's results were unexpected at the time since the corpuscular theory was still quite prevalent.

The Double Slit Experiment

Young created a point source of monochromatic or one colored light and shined it at a screen with two small slits. According to corpuscular theory, this should have created two lines of light directly aligned with the two slits. Instead, Young saw an interference pattern of numerous bright and dark lines being created by constructive and destructive interference. This result confirmed the wave theory of light and allowed Young to measure the wavelength of light.

A Question About the Quantum Photon Theory of Light

A modification of this experiment raises an interesting question. Even with a full understanding of Quantum Mechanics, scientists are unable to explain why Young's experiment still creates an interference pattern when only one photon of light is generated at a time.

Our hypothesis is that the so called question of wave vs particle duality that has been plaguing science for years is actually solved if we consider that light travels as a wavelet. Although blackbody radiation experiments indicate that light can only be created or detected in photon or electron sized quanta, isn't it possible that it can actually exist at any energy level?

 

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