Classical microscopic theory of dispersion, emission and absorption of light in dielectrics
Classical microscopic theory of dielectric susceptibility
Department of Mathematics, Università degli Studi di
Published online: 21 October 2014
This paper is a continuation of a recent one in which, apparently for the first time, the existence of polaritons in ionic crystals was proven in a microscopic electrodynamic theory. This was obtained through an explicit computation of the dispersion curves. Here the main further contribution consists in studying electric susceptibility, from which the spectrum can be inferred. We show how susceptibility is obtained by the Green-Kubo methods of Hamiltonian statistical mechanics, and give for it a concrete expression in terms of time-correlation functions. As in the previous paper, here too we work in a completely classical framework, in which the electrodynamic forces acting on the charges are all taken into account, both the retarded forces and the radiation reaction ones. So, in order to apply the methods of statistical mechanics, the system has to be previously reduced to a Hamiltonian one. This is made possible in virtue of two global properties of classical electrodynamics, namely, the Wheeler-Feynman identity and the Ewald resummation properties, the proofs of which were already given for ordered system. The second contribution consists in formulating the theory in a completely general way, so that in principle it applies also to disordered systems such as glasses, or liquids or gases, provided the two general properties mentioned above continue to hold. A first step in this direction is made here by providing a completely general proof of the Wheeler-Feynman identity, which is shown to be the counterpart of a general causality property of classical electrodynamics. Finally it is shown how a line spectrum can appear at all in classical systems, as a counterpart of suitable stability properties of the motions, with a broadening due to a coexistence of chaoticity. The relevance of some recent results of the theory of dynamical systems in this connection is also pointed out.
Key words: Optical Phenomena and Photonics
© EDP Sciences, Società Italiana di Fisica, Springer-Verlag 2014