The Interaction of a Beam of Electromagnetic Radiation with a Free Electric Charge

The Compton Effect
  • John N. Dodd
Part of the Physics of Atoms and Molecules book series (PIDF)


We have studied the classical description of an electromagnetic radiation field and of its interaction with a charge. It is now necessary to study a simple case, both theoretically and experimentally, to find out whether there are further restrictions and rules that govern the interaction. We choose for study the simplest case, the scattering of radiation by a free charge; the natural frequency v 0 of Eq. (3.2) is zero. The damping will also be neglected. However, we now recognize that linear momentum will be transferred to the charge through the interaction of the magnetic field of the radiation with the movement of the charge. Firstly we shall look at the experimental facts and then we shall compare this with the theoretical prediction. The physical phenomenon goes under the name of the Compton effect.


Charged Particle Electromagnetic Radiation Interaction State Lorentz Transformation Scattered Radiation 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • John N. Dodd
    • 1
  1. 1.University of OtagoOtagoNew Zealand

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