ERIC Number: EJ880930
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-May
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 12
What Did Kramers and Kronig Do and How Did They Do It?
Bohren, Craig F.
European Journal of Physics, v31 n3 p573-577 May 2010
Over time the account of how the Kramers-Kronig (dispersion) relations between the real and imaginary parts of response functions were derived in 1926 and 1927 has been transmogrified into anecdotes about what might have been done but was not. Although Kramers obtained both members of a pair of relations, Kronig obtained only one. Both authors appealed to specific models of an atomic gas rather than to the general arguments about linearity, causality and analyticity in modern model-independent derivations. Kramers merely speculated on whether the specific results he obtained might have a more general validity. Neither author showed that a signal cannot travel faster than cin any medium for which the dispersion relations are satisfied. Indeed, they did not mention, even obliquely, signal speeds and causality. Despite their magical aura, Kramers-Kronig relations are translations into somewhat cryptic frequency language of statements clearer in time language.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A