Abstract

The exact solution of the basic equations of molecular optics is obtained for the problem of refraction and reflection of any given monochromatic electromagnetic wave (not necessarily a plane one) that is incident on a linear, homogeneous, isotropic, nonmagnetic dielectric filling a half-space. Our analysis provides a new derivation of the laws of refraction and reflection and of Fresnel formulas and throws some light on the role played by the Ewald-Oseen extinction theorem in solving the molecular-optics equations. The methods developed in this paper may be employed in determining solutions of the molecular-optics equations for other problems that involve the interaction of electromagnetic radiation and bulk matter.

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