OpenStax CNX

You are here: Home » Content » Photon Momentum

About: Photon Momentum

Module by: OpenStax College. E-mail the author

View the content: Photon Momentum


Name: Photon Momentum
ID: m42568
Language: English (en)
  • Relate the linear momentum of a photon to its energy or wavelength, and apply linear momentum conservation to simple processes involving the emission, absorption, or reflection of photons.
  • Account qualitatively for the increase of photon wavelength that is observed, and explain the significance of the Compton wavelength.
Subject: Science and Technology
Keywords: momentum, photon, quantum, relativity
License: Creative Commons Attribution License CC-BY 3.0

Authors: OpenStax College (
Copyright Holders: Rice University (
Maintainers: OpenStax College (, OSC Physics Maintainer (

Latest version: 1.4 (history)
First publication date: Jan 18, 2012 9:23 am -0600
Last revision to module: Sep 6, 2013 3:46 pm -0500


PDF: m42568_1.4.pdf PDF file, for viewing content offline and printing. Learn more.
EPUB: m42568_1.4.epub Electronic publication file, for viewing in handheld devices. Learn more.
XML: m42568_1.4.cnxml XML that defines the structure and contents of the module, minus any included media files. Can be reimported in the editing interface. Learn more.
Source Export ZIP: ZIP containing the module XML plus any included media files. Can be reimported in the editing interface. Learn more.
Offline ZIP: An offline HTML copy of the content. Also includes XML, included media files, and other support files. Learn more.

Version History

Version: 1.4 Sep 6, 2013 3:46 pm -0500 by OSC Physics Maintainer
ISM PDF edits.

Version: 1.3 Jul 5, 2012 9:41 pm -0500 by OSC Physics Maintainer
image updates and LO modification

Version: 1.2 May 29, 2012 4:34 pm -0500 by OSC Physics Maintainer
initial content publication

Version: 1.1 Jan 20, 2012 8:02 pm -0600 by OSC Physics Maintainer
Created module

How to Reuse and Attribute This Content

If you derive a copy of this content using a OpenStax_CNX account and publish your version, proper attribution of the original work will be automatically done for you.

If you reuse this work elsewhere, in order to comply with the attribution requirements of the license (CC-BY 3.0), you must include

  • the authors' names: OpenStax College
  • the title of the work: Photon Momentum
  • the OpenStax_CNX URL where the work can be found:

See the citation section below for examples you can copy.

How to Cite and Attribute This Content

The following citation styles comply with the attribution requirements for the license (CC-BY 3.0) of this work:

American Chemical Society (ACS) Style Guide:

OpenStax College. Photon Momentum, OpenStax_CNX Web site., Sep 6, 2013.

American Medical Assocation (AMA) Manual of Style:

OpenStax College. Photon Momentum [OpenStax_CNX Web site]. September 6, 2013. Available at:

American Psychological Assocation (APA) Publication Manual:

OpenStax College. (2013, September 6). Photon Momentum. Retrieved from the OpenStax_CNX Web site:

Chicago Manual of Style (Bibliography):

OpenStax College. "Photon Momentum." OpenStax_CNX. September 6, 2013.

Chicago Manual of Style (Note):

OpenStax College, "Photon Momentum," OpenStax_CNX, September 6, 2013,

Chicago Manual of Style (Reference, in Author-Date style):

OpenStax College. 2013. Photon Momentum. OpenStax_CNX, September 6, 2013.

Modern Languages Association (MLA) Style Manual:

OpenStax College. Photon Momentum. OpenStax_CNX. 6 Sep. 2013 <>.