Story behind the derivation of “Dual nature of light”
Topic: Story behind the derivation of “Dual nature of light”
We all agree on the fact that the Sun is the biggest source of energy but there is a huge contradiction between scientists to decide the nature of light rays. In 1675 Newton gave his famous corpuscular theory. As per his theory, the light source emits tiny particles of different shapes and sizes which are known as corpuscles. These corpuscles move in a straight line. So we can say that according to Newton, light has a particle nature. Now problem was that if we believe the particle nature of light then we will not able to verify the phenomenon of interference, diffraction, and polarization of light. This theory was given by Newton in 1675 and in 1678 a Dutch scientist name Huygen contradicted his theory and claimed that light has a wave nature.
Interestingly Huygen's theory was not accepted till 1850. In 1850 French scientist named Michel Foucault corrected Newton's corpuscular theory and proved that the speed of light is greater in the rarer mediums. While in corpuscular theory Newton claimed that the speed of light is greater in a denser medium. This was the first time that a question mark was raised on corpuscular theory.
Approximately 172 years later, Huygen's theory was reconsidered when the corpuscular theory was rejected by Foucault. Huygen suggested in his theory that light is a mechanical wave and has a wave nature of light. The main drawback of Huygen's theory was that every mechanical wave needs a medium, then how is it possible for sun rays to have a medium in space, as there is a vacuum in space. This complication was solved by another scientist named Aether. As per his theory, the whole universe is a medium that is highly elastic and very dilutes.
Huygens's theory was considered more appropriate as it also proved the phenomenon of interference and diffraction. Unfortunately, this principle failed to prove the phenomenon of polarization. Michelson–Morley experiment suggested that the aether was non-existent. This led to considerable theoretical work to explain the propagation of light without an aether.
In 1920, accepting the ether theory, Albert Einstein said: “Recapitulating, we may say that according to the general theory of relativity space is endowed with physical qualities; in this sense, therefore, there exists an ether. According to the general theory of relativity, space without ether is unthinkable; for in such space there not only would be no propagation of light, but also no possibility of existence for standards of space and time.
Concluding the blog, today the whole world is aware of the dual nature of light. It moves in a straight line in the form of particles and at the time these particles make a waveform.