Monday, July 21, 2014

Do Radio Waves Bounce Off Each Other?

Physicist Hans Schantz asks, "Do Radio Waves Bounce Off Each Other?"

He answers that in the affirmative in his technical paper: "On the Superposition and Elastic Recoil of Electromagnetic Waves". 

The full paper is available here at FERMAT (PDF).

His summary for a lay audience:
My technical paper on superposition and electromagnetic recoil is now available online. I argue that the conventional view of radio waves passing through each other is fundamentally flawed. Instead, I present a relatively simple and straightforward argument that the energy associated with electromagnetic waves actually bounces or recoils when radio waves interfere with each other. We've been using this new physical perspective quite successfully in our near-field indoor location systems at Q-Track

Here's a recent WebWire news release.

And related commentary from wireless engineer Steven Crowley, "Looking at radio wave interaction as an electromagnetic Newton’s cradle".

(Caption: "When two identical waves interact, no energy transfers through the point of interaction. The energy “bounces” as the waves exchange their energy.")