@MISC{Huang901isthe, author = {Young-sea Huang}, title = {Is the phase of plane waves an invariant?}, year = {901} }

Share

OpenURL

Abstract

Based on the invariance of the phase of waves, plane waves was shown to propagate with negative frequencies in a medium which moves at superluminal speeds opposite to the propagation direction of plane waves. The validity of the invariance of the phase of plane waves was then called into question. A radical change of the conventional concept of plane waves is recently proposed to solve the problem of negative frequency of waves. Here, we point out flaws in that proposal. Thus, the validity of the invariance of the phase of plane waves remains questionable. Key words: special relativity, phase invariance, Lorentz transformation, Lorentz-covariant, negative frequency. PACS: 03.30.+p special relativity. 1 The invariance of the phase of plane waves is an important concept in physics. Is the phase of plane waves a frame-independent quantity? To almost all physicists, the answer is yes. Nevertheless, the invariance of the phase of plane waves has never been proved; it is only postulated, or argued, to be valid.[1, 2]. From the invariance of the phase of plane waves, the 4-vector (ω/c,k) of plane waves is shown to be Lorentz-covariant. Surprisingly, based on the Lorentz-covariance of the 4-vector (ω/c,k), plane waves are shown to propagate with negative frequencies in a medium which moves at superluminal speeds opposite to the propagation direction of