Interpretation vaves The form of the above expression shows that the power flow is positive in the +z direction,
and that the two components of the electric field do not interact.
A similar analysis of power flow in the case of two waves propagating in opposite
directions leads to the similar and interesting conclusion that these two waves do not
interact in their power flow either. The particular result we can prove is that the net
power carried to the right is equal to the power which the rightward propagating wave (if
it alone were present) would carry, less the power which the leftward propagating wave
would carry to the left if it alone were present.
This result demonstrates a property known as the power orthogonality of oppositely
directed uniform plane waves.
Because power is a quantity quadratically dependent on the field amplitudes, we could
not have obtained this last result by superposition. It appears to be an interesting property
of plane wave solutions of Maxwell's equations.
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