The Recoil of Electrons from Scattered X-Rays, in Physical Review 23, 4, 1924, pp. 439-449
Lancaster: American Institute of Physics, 1924. 1st Edition. FIRST EDITION OF THE 1924 PAPER IN WHICH COMPTON & HUBBARD FIRST CONFIRM & OBSERVE THE PARTICLE NATURE OF ELECTROMAGNETIC RADIATION (OR THE COMPTON EFFECT) USING WILSON’S NEW CLOUD CHAMBER METHOD.
In a 1923 paper, Arthur Compton explained the Compton effect -- the increase in wavelength of X-rays scattered by collisions with electrons. The Compton effect, “the quantum theory of scattering suggested by Compton… assumes that each directed X-ray quantum is scattered by a single electron” (Compton and Hubbard, 1924, 449). Compton ends his 1923 paper by saying that 'the electrons which recoil in the process of the scattering of ordinary X-rays have not been observed'.
In this 1924 paper, Compton and John Charles Hubbard, “in order to decide between Darwin’s theory and the light-quantum theory… proposed to analyze the maximum energy of the recoil electrons and the relative number of observed recoil electrons to photoelectrons. They arrived at the following result: ‘Both from the standpoint of the experimental evidence and from internal consistency of the theory we therefore seem forced to the conclusion that each quantum of scattered X-rays is emitted in a definite direction’ (Rechenberg, Historical Development of Quantum Theory, 609; Compton and Hubbard, 1924, 449).
“Compton and Hubbard’s conclusion in favor of the light-quantum theory was based on counting the number of recoil electrons producing a track of given length in the cloud chamber” (Rechenberg, 609). Compton won the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1927 for his discovery of the Compton effect.
ALSO INCLUDED: Millikan and Bowen, “Extreme Ultra-violet Spectra”, pp. 1-35. Item #853
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