Are There Shockwaves of Light Like Sonic Booms?
Most recent answer: 12/23/2013
- Ed Bates (age 58)
Springtown TX USA
I don't fully understand all of your questions, so I'll direct you to an effect which I think you are interested in, and you can follow-up if you still have questions.
As you know, traveling faster than the speed of sound in air causes a shock wave known as a sonic boom. Similarly, if a charged particle travels faster than the speed of light* in a medium, then it emits an electromagnetic wave known as Cherenkov radiation.
*Nothing can travel faster than the universal constant c, the speed of light in vacuum. But the speed (specifically, phase velocity) of light in a medium is slower, and is the speed you have to beat to get Cherenkov radiation.
This radiation is often found in nuclear reactors, which is why they look beautiful and dangerous, like this:
More about Cherenkov radiation can be found on Wikipedia:
(published on 12/23/2013)