Question #4eebd

1 Answer
Jun 26, 2014

Particles can diffract and interfere – as hypothesised by de Broglie.

Interference patterns of x-rays directed through atomic structures were well known by the time de Broglie hypothesised that particles could behave like waves.

After he made his hypothesis and formulated the equation for a wavelength for particles the hypothesis was tested. Electrons were fired through a thin foil of graphite onto a fluorescent screen (which scintillates when electrons strike it). The electrons produced an interference pattern identical to x-rays of the same wavelength. I.e. the x-ray wavelength was already known and the wavelength proposed by de Broglie for the electrons was equal to that.

I briefly discuss this toward the end of this video introduction to quantum physics:

I have also recorded the particle diffraction experiment here: