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Lectures on LightNonlinear and Quantum Optics using the Density Matrix$
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Stephen C. Rand

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780198757450

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198757450.001.0001

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Basic Classical Concepts

Basic Classical Concepts

Chapter:
(p.1) 1 Basic Classical Concepts
Source:
Lectures on Light
Author(s):

Stephen C. Rand

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198757450.003.0001

Chapter 1 is an extremely brief review of the elementary aspects of light as a classical electromagnetic wave, that is, an introduction to classical electromagnetism. In a discussion of electric and magnetic interactions, Maxwell’s equations are outlined and the scalar wave equation is derived from them. Then the most basic features of the interaction of light with matter are considered, namely absorption and dispersion. Specific subsections also deal with the resonant response and the vectorial character of light, touching on the possible polarization states of light.

Keywords:   classical electromagnetism, light, electromagnetic waves, absorption, dispersion, Maxwell’s equations, resonant response, polarization states

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