Planck's Radiation Formula: a Correction


SINCE passing the proofs of my letter which appeared in Nature of April 20* I have found, as a result of a conversation with Dr. G. J. Whitrow, that the conditions prescribed for the radiation formula admit of a more general solution than that of Planck. Any function of ξ = νÏn-3/4 which satisfies the equation meets those conditions. It may be that dimensional or other considerations will be found to impose somewhat severe limits on the form of the function, and it would be possible to invoke the (purely macroscopic and continuous) Wien's law to limit n to the value 1/2, but at the present stage the possibilities appear to be too numerous to justify the statement that Planck's law has been deduced on macroscopic grounds. This statement must therefore be withdrawn.

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DINGLE, H. Planck's Radiation Formula: a Correction. Nature 157, 556 (1946).

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