In this chapter we begin to investigate the broad area of physics concerned with electromagnetic radiation and waves. The next four chapters discuss various aspects of optics, the science of light. Here we first introduce electromagnetic waves and some of their properties including their structure, energy, and momentum. Laser (or optical) tweezers is an exciting new technique that allows manipulation of microscopic structures or of individual macromolecules even within living cells. We introduce the technique based on the momentum contained in an electromagnetic wave, and show that laser tweezers represents a novel rapidly growing experimental technique. A brief discussion of photons, the elementary quanta of electromagnetism, and the notion of wave–particle duality are given in order to understand the basis for a large array of spectroscopic techniques using the various portions of the electromagnetic spectrum.
Electromagnetic (EM) radiation is created whenever...
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