THEORETICAL INVESTIGATIONS ON THE LIGHT SCATTERING OF SPHERES. XVI. RANGE OF PRACTICAL VALIDITY OF THE RAYLEIGH THEORY.
Technical rept. no. 9 55,
WAYNE STATE UNIV DETROIT MICH
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The errors committed on using the Rayleigh equations of light scattering at finite alpha-values were evaluated numerically for spherical nonabsorbing particles using exact Mie-data as the reference. Considering an error of 2 as the tolerable maximum, the upper limiting particle diameters which may be evaluated by means of the Rayleigh equations are, expressed in units relative to the wave length in the medium used, 0.124and0.207 at m 1.00 and 1.30 respectively. The errors committed on evaluating turbidity or lateral scattering from the Rayleigh equations are distinctly larger at identical true alpha-values, and at identical m-values. The interesting fact that the Rayleigh equations perform better the larger m- as long as m approx. 1.8-opens up the possibility of using these equations for the evaluation of relative large particle diameters provided m is sufficiently large. This second range of validity of the Rayleigh theory appears to be of major meteorological and astrophysical interest. Author