The Relationship between Electromagnetic Radiation and Matter

Date:  2021-03-29 08:37:32
8 pages  (1996 words)
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The human brain is designed to interpret how light can interact with matter; however, the human brain and eye are not able to capture the wavelength of above 390nm and below 750nm. The use of light-based instruments has been influenced by the insights that individuals possess on the affiliation between radiation and matter and also allows people to determine the various conventions that restrain the relationship of matter and electromagnetic radiation. This essay will look into photons, the presence of charged particles, the presence of neutrons and how these three are capable of interacting with matter. The assessment of these interactions is mainly necessitated in the expansion of insights on x-rays, gamma rays and the effect of ionizing radiations on matter. The sole purpose of this article is to reveal the relevant insights on the interaction of electromagnetic radiation and matter.

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Matter regards any item on the surface of the earth including the atoms, ions, and the molecules as well that formulates physical entities and is often suggested to be any entity that has mass and is capable of taking up space (Bagley). Matter is described in 5 forms which begin with the solid form where the particles that make up the entity are crammed together in a way that they cannot move to a large extent. The energy of these particles often regarded as kinetic is usually low, and the vibration levels are hence low despite the fact that all atoms are always in movement. Solids normally have specific forms and hence cannot be manipulated to take the shape of the structure they are put in because of the inability to conform to pressure to move the particles which are crammed together (Bagley).

The liquid and gas states follow with heightened kinetic energy and greater motion of atoms as they have the freedom to move to a greater extent that solid particles and to make more vibrations. Gasses and liquids are parallel to solids due to the ability of the fluids to follow the shape of the storage and the inability of gasses to be placed in a container. If gasses are compressed in a container, they are likely to increase in temperature due to the closeness of the particles based on a force (Bagley). Plasma and the Bose-Einstein condensates are the other two forms and they are rare where plasma is often made up of stimulated particles which host an extensive quota of kinetic energy (Namdkumar, p.49). The Bose-Einstein state is formulated through the fusion of laser and magnetic forces to freeze rubidium to below absolute zero temperatures which allow for the motion of atoms to be cubed to almost zero and the kinetic energy is also considered to be zero. This state is taken into consideration when the particles fuse to form a single atom (Bagley).


This term references the study and interaction of matter with the EMR which encompasses all the processes of either absorption, transmission and the dispersion of the radiation waves (Juste and Faza, p.1). Juste and Faza also add that the properties and form of the waves can be elaborated through the study of their molecular as well as the atomic formulation and can aid in the creation of spectroscopic techniques. The radiation interaction with matter is studied from parallel perspectives like the length of the bonds, the angles of the bonds, the angles of torsions as well as the symmetry of the molecules, the density of the radiation waves, the electric and magnetic formulations and finally the distribution levels of energy. There exist several theories that reference the interaction of radiation with matter like the quantum framework which has been formed with the core intent of disclosing the transition of electrons in atoms (p.2).

Characteristics of Electromagnetic Radiation

The first feature is based on the velocity of the wave and the second characteristic is the polarization of the radiation. Polarization often involves the dispersal of the electric field in a direction or plane that is homogeneous to that of the direction of the radiation. The traveling wave features of electromagnetic radiation are formulated by the presence of transverse waves that have a magnetic and electric field which is set to be alternating (Elachi and Zyl, p. 26).

Electromagnetic Radiation

Electromagnetic Radiation (EMR) can be referenced as a system of energy that is often discharged and immersed by stimulated particles that are capable of causing harm to the body of an individual or any other form of matter. The intensity of the radiation is often measured based on the expansion of the material from the transmitting device and also the density of the EMR dispensed. Felix, Gabriel and Emmanuel (2013) highlight that the electromagnetic field and the presence of waves are salient for the transmission of the signals which can be in the form of voice, picture depictions and also data (p.48). On the part of the electromagnetic field, it is transparent that the field is being moved at a homogenous speed to light which is quite high and hence can be controlled, sent out and even received in order to move the desired information (Mohana). When it comes to radiation waves that are sent out at much lower frequencies like microwave, infrared and radio do not have a great impact on the matter but are also influenced by the effect of heating which affects fluctuations in the intensity of the radiation.

When it comes to EMR, there has been a theory that has been proposed which suggests that for every particle that has any amount of movement and mass there is an eventual wave. The pilot wave was proposed to have been the wave that can define this motion of the particle as the quantum framework which has been used as a reference often suggests that the characteristics of waves are defined in the photon. This photon is often regarded as a factor of wavelength and the frequency of transmission. Electromagnetic wave functions are always characterized into two forms, the Schrodinger and the de Broglie wave function and these are often explained as a factor of interaction with matter (Boldyreva).

Interaction of EMR in propagating through similar materials- This is often described through several equations and the aspects considered in the formation of the equations is the relative electric permittivity of the material as well as the relative magnetic permeability. This electric permittivity is derived from the ratio between the permittivity of the free space and that of the material under which the radiation wave is being passed through. When it comes to the magnetic permeability, there is the assessment of the ratio of the magnetic permeability of the material and that of free space. In this form of propagation, it is salient to note that the electric and the magnetic fields are considered to operate perpendicular to each other and parallel to the direction to which the wave is being dispensed.

Juste and Faza note that the quantum framework has allowed for the assessment of how radiation interacts with matter based on the fact that absorption and dispensation of radiation waves often occur based on the attachment of quantity to the energy levels of the atoms and molecules (p.5). The Bohr framework is often referenced as an explanation to the interaction of matter and electromagnetic radiation as Bohr has used this framework to elaborate on the electrons. The particles, in this case, are discussed to orbit in an individual path but with different forms of acceleration without emission of the EM energy. This means that in this kind of interaction, the atom could not drop on the nucleus based on its inability to produce energy and in fact the consumption of the energy. The atom is then suggested to be in a stable state which is the levels under which the atom operates in terms of energy (Li, p.106).

The large particles as often expected interact with the electrons in a material but target a bulk of the electrons but it happens that the ions of the particles can be observed to move in a single direction until they get to a point where they have no more energy to move based on the quota of interactions. It is salient to comprehend the classes of radiation that are often observed in the study of its interaction with matter and they include the Coulombic, electromagnetic and Nuclear radiation. EMR waves have the ability to bend around any solids that are in their way in a process referenced as diffraction. This occurs through a detailed process such that any areas that are not countered by an obstruction will provide a position for the wave to radiate special spherical shaped waves which will induce a new wavefront that is a tangent of the new secondary based waves.

Attenuation is one form of interaction between EMR and matter and it considers the fact that there are interactions of the class all or nothing whereby there is a wave of radiation beams that have homogenous energy. Beyond this, the waves are seen to be moving in a homogenous direction and at some point in the movement, the amount of particles in the radiation wave are seen to be lower. The proportionality of loss for the wave is such that the loss can be equated to the distance but only works for short distances and the probability of the particles being lower in number is directly equal to the quota of particles left in the wave. In this form of interaction, the speed at which the wave of radiation loses the original photons is often assessed (Morrissey).

The photoelectric effect is one of the terms used to elaborate on the interaction of matter with EMR and it encompasses the interaction of photons with electrons that are held in a single atom. It also considers the interaction of a photon with an electron that has been condensed and is often in the form of a solid that has a series of atoms that are highly shared. Photons ionize the atom, which infers that it removes an electron and shares it with the atom and can also cause a form of excitement to the atom through the placement of all electrons permanently in the atom. This photoelectric interaction of EMR with matter encompasses the intake of a photon by atomic electrons which are then removed from the atom. The conditions for this form of interaction involve the presence of greater energy levels in the photon that is dispensing the electrons parallel to the ionization energy of the electron that is being ejected. The argument presented in this interaction is that the atom is bigger that the electron being removed and the electron are seen to possess all the energy being dispersed by the photon.

Compton effect is also used to elaborate on the interaction of matter and electromagnetic radiation and it encompasses the dispersion of photons from an electron that is actually free or an electron that is held lightly by an atomic electron. There are several conventions used in study of EMR that restrain the extent to which the kinetic energy is available in the photoelectron (Hoff). This is often distinguished with another scattering interaction known as Rayleigh scattering whereby the photon has the ability to scatter from atoms fully without undergoing the process of either ionization or even riling up the atom. This encompasses the atom absorbing some of the energy hence culminating in a photon which has lost some of its energy and this mainly occurs in photons that exist under low energy levels. One of the practical justifications for this process is the presence of the blue sky but it is noted that the Rayleigh scattering happens less often compared to the photoelectric effect (Harczuk, Vahtras, and Agren, p.4296).

In a nutshell, there is the process of Bremsstrahlung which often occurs when radiation waves are broken down ad mainly occurs when a particle that is highly excited has its speed increased. In that case not only...

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