Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the photon, the fundamental particle associated with light.
Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the photon, one of the most enigmatic objects in the Universe. Generations of scientists have struggled to understand the nature of light. In the late nineteenth century it seemed clear that light was an electromagnetic wave. But the work of physicists including Planck and Einstein shed doubt on this theory. Today scientists accept that light can behave both as a wave and a particle, the latter known as the photon. Understanding light in terms of photons has enabled the development of some of the most important technology of the last fifty years.
Professor Emeritus of Physics at the University of Oxford
Professor of Surface Physics at the University of Manchester
Senior Lecturer in Physics and Astronomy at the University of Sheffield.
Producer: Thomas Morris.
LINKS AND FURTHER READING
Frank Close, The Infinity Puzzle: Quantum Field Theory and the Hunt for an Orderly Universe (Basic Books, 2013)
Richard Feynman, QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter (Penguin, 1990)
Manjit Kumar, Quantum: Einstein, Bohr and the Great Debate About the Nature of Reality (Icon Books Ltd, 2009)
International Year of Light 2015 - UNESCO
The American Physical Society celebrates the International Year of Light
Scientists slow the speed of light - BBC News
Milestones – photons - Nature
Applications of lasers - Nobel Prizes
The 2012 Nobel Prize in Physics (awarded for developing ground-breaking methods for measuring and manipulating single photons)
|Interviewed Guest||Frank Close|
|Interviewed Guest||Wendy Flavell|
|Interviewed Guest||Susan Cartwright|