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*From*: "Donald E. Simanek" <dsimanek@eagle.lhup.edu>*Date*: Sun, 23 Feb 1997 23:37:33 -0500 (EST)

On Sun, 23 Feb 1997, Ed Schweber wrote:

David Abineri wrote:

I wonder if I can get help on this question from a high school class.

If two electromagnetic waves interfere destructively, what happens to the

energy associated with the waves. I am guessing that on the large scale,

in a double slit experiment that additional energy shows up at the points

of constructive interference that compensates for the loss at the nodes.

That's a correct interpretation. The interference does not cause any

reduction in the total energy in the combined field.

But, what about looking as just the waves that are meeting at a node?

Remember that the waves are a mathematical abstraction to describe what we

can measure, in particular, they relate to the probability of finding a

photon at a particular place in space and time. We don't think of the

waves as somehow 'colliding' with each other.

Ed Schweiber's longer answer put it very well.

-- Donald

.......................................................................

Dr. Donald E. Simanek Office: 717-893-2079

Prof. of Physics Internet: dsimanek@eagle.lhup.edu

Lock Haven University, Lock Haven, PA. 17745 CIS: 73147,2166

Home page: http://www.lhup.edu/~dsimanek FAX: 717-893-2047

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