DOC.
14 87
light,
and
other
groups
of
phenomena
associated with the
production
or con
version of light
can
be
understood better if
one
assumes
that the
energy
of
[5]
light
is discontinuously
distributed in
space. According
to
the
assumption
to
be contemplated
here,
when
a
light
ray
is
spreading
from
a
point,
the
energy
is
not
distributed
continuously
over
everincreasing
spaces,
but consists
of
a
finite
number of
energy quanta
that
are
localized in
points
in
space, move
without dividing,
and
can
be
absorbed
or
generated only
as a
whole.
In this
paper
I wish to communicate
my
train of
thought
and
present the
facts that led
me
to
this
course,
in the
hope
that the
point
of
view to be
elaborated
may
prove
of
use
to
some
researchers in
their
investigations.
§1.
On a
difficulty encountered
in the
theory of "blackbody
radiation"
We
shall
begin
by
taking
the
standpoint
of
Maxwell's
theory and
the
electron
theory
and
consider the
following
case.
Consider
a
space
enclosed
by
completely
reflecting walls
containing
a
number
of
gas
molecules
and
electrons
that
move
freely
and
exert
conservative forces
on
each
other
when they
come
very
close
to each other,
i.e.,
they
can
collide like
gas
molecules
according
to
the kinetic
theory
of
gases.1
Suppose,
further,
that
a
number
of electrons
are
bound
to
points
in
space
which
are
very
far
from each
other,
by
forces
that
are
directed
toward
these
points and
are
proportional
to
the
elongations
from
the
points. These
electrons,
too, shall
enter
into conservative
interactions with the free
molecules
and
electrons
when
the latter
come very
close
to them.
We
call the electrons
bound
to
the
points
in
space
"resonators";
they emit and
absorb
electromagnetic
waves
of definite
periods.
[7]
According
to
the
present view
about the
origin
of light,
the radiation
in the
space
considered, found
for the
case
of
dynamic
equilibrium
on
the
basis
of
Maxwell's
theory,
must be
identical with
"blackbody
radiation"

at
[8]
least if
one assumes
that
resonators
of all the relevant
frequencies
are
present.
[9]
1This assumption
is
equivalent
to
the
assumption
that the
mean
kinetic
energies
of
gas
molecules
and electrons
are
equal
to each
other
at thermal
equilibrium.
As
we
know,
Mr.
Drude
used
the latter
assumption
to
derive
the
ratio of
thermal
and
electric conductivities
of
the
metals
theoretically.
[6]