Books  Physical Sciences  Physics 

Light: A Very Short Introduction

Popular Science
Covers the physics of light, its historical development and significance, and its applications in modern science
Introduces the vast array of modern optical technologies, from long-distance communications, to DVD and CD readers and writers, to surgical tools
Looks at exciting new developments using quantum light sources and 'optical tweezers' to manipulate individual molecules

Series: Very Short Introduction Series Volume: 446

By: Ian Walmsley (Author)

152 pages, illustrations

Oxford University Press

Paperback | Sep 2015 | #225287 | ISBN-13: 9780199682690
Availability: Usually dispatched within 48 hours
NHBS Price: £7.99 $10/€9 approx

About this book

Light enables us to see the world around us. Our sense of sight provides us with direct information about space and time, the physical arrangement of the world, and how it changes. This almost universal shared sensation of vision has led to a fascination with the nature and properties of light across the ages. But the light we see is just a small part of the whole spectrum of electromagnetic radiation, ranging from radio waves to gamma rays. In this Very Short Introduction Ian Walmsley discusses early attempts to explain light, and the development of apparently opposing particulate and wave theories by scientists such as Isaac Newton and Christiaan Huygens.

In Light: A Very Short Introduction Ian shows how light was recognized as an electromagnetic wave in the 19th century, and the development of the quantum mechanics view of wave-particle duality in the 20th century. He also describes the many applications of light, domestic and scientific, such as microwaves, DVDs, and lasers. We now use the whole range of electromagnetic radiation to peer both into the human body and deep into space. Turning to the future of optics, Walmsley concludes by looking at some of the most exciting new developments using quantum light sources in communications and computing.


Contents

1. What is light?
2. Rays
3. Waves
4. Duality
5. Light matters
6. Light, space and time
7. Lighting the frontiers
8. Quantum Light
9. Twilight

Further Reading
Index


Write a review

There are currently no reviews for this product. Be the first to review this product!


Biography

Ian Walmsley is the Hooke Professor of Experimental Physics at the University of Oxford, where he is also the Pro-Vice Chancellor for Research and University Collections and a Fellow of St. Hugh's College. He has engaged in research in optical science and engineering for more than thirty years, and has published over 200 papers in ultrafast laser science, quantum optics and information processing and optical coherent control of matter. Prior to joining the University of Oxford, he was on the faculty of the Institute of Optics at the University of Rochester, NY, USA, where he served also as the Chair of the Undergraduate Program, and as Director of the Institute.

Bestsellers in this subject

The Origin and Nature of Life on Earth

NHBS Price: £29.99 $38/€35 approx

Einstein's Masterwork

NHBS Price: £10.99 $14/€13 approx

Exploring Colour in the Environment

NHBS Price: £3.50 $4/€4 approx

A Century of Ideas

NHBS Price: £123.00 $156/€145 approx

Why Cats Land on Their Feet

NHBS Price: £13.95 $18/€16 approx