Does the Abraham or the Minkowski momentum describe the momentum transport of light in media? Here we show that this is a question of fluid dynamics. In momentum transport, neither the Abraham nor the Minkowski momentum is fundamental, but they emerge depending on the fluid-mechanical response of the medium on the light. If the fluid is not brought into motion, the Minkowski momentum emerges, if it moves the Abraham momentum appears.
Physical Review A
- Pub Date:
- September 2014
- Mechanical effects of light on material media microstructures and particles;
- Classical electromagnetism Maxwell equations;
- Navier-Stokes equations;
- Other topics in fluid dynamics