Microscopic circular polarizabilities (rotabilities) and the macroscopic properties of chiral media
Article first published online: 7 DEC 2012
Copyright 1991 by the American Geophysical Union.
Volume 26, Issue 2, pages 511–516, March-April 1991
How to Cite
1991), Microscopic circular polarizabilities (rotabilities) and the macroscopic properties of chiral media, Radio Sci., 26(2), 511–516, doi:10.1029/90RS00904., , and (
- Issue published online: 7 DEC 2012
- Article first published online: 7 DEC 2012
- Manuscript Accepted: 9 APR 1990
- Manuscript Received: 4 JAN 1990
The concepts of canonical sources and canonical circular polarizabilities, which are referred to as “rotabilities” in this paper, appropriate for a chiral medium are used to describe circularly polarized fields in a medium containing a distribution of chiral (handed) particles. Due to the introduction of different rotabilities for right and left handed particles, we avoid mode conversion between left and right circularly polarized fields at the microscopic level which is also absent at the macroscopic level in an infinite homogeneous chiral medium. The transition from the microscopic to the macroscopic picture is hence smooth and involves just an ensemble average of the microscopic fields and the introduction of macroscopic constitutive equations, but does not involve the use of any extinction theorems. Extinction theorems are needed in other models that permit mode conversion in the microscopic picture but not in the macroscopic medium. Explicit relations are obtained between macroscopic material properties and microscopic polarizabilities in the long wavelength limit. These are similar to the Clausius-Mossotti relations between the dielectric permittivity and the electric polarizability, but are not a trivial generalization for chiral media.