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By Dr. Inés Urdaneta / Physicist and Research Scientist at Resonance Science Foundation
In a past article entitled “The origin of quantum mechanics I: The Electromagnetic field as a wave” we had introduced the most relevant features of light as an electromagnetic field propagating in a 3D trajectory through space. Among the notions addressed we had explained the spectrum -or colors- of light, the components of the electromagnetic fields and their continuous, wavelike nature. In this second article we explain why the wavelike nature of light was not enough to explain certain behaviors of the interaction between light and matter; the understanding of such phenomena required introducing a “corpuscular” description of light that marked the origin of quantum theory, changing the paradigm with respect to classical physics.