8.1 Preface

This module is concerned with the exchange of energy between an organism and its environment in the form of radiation. Classical and modern radiation theory are discussed and the applications of these physical principles to analysis of biological systems are presented. Emphasis in these applications is upon the evolutionary significance of the physical processes. In one type of application, physical theory is used to isolate constant factors in the environment to which all organisms must adjust their evolution. In a second application, physical theory is used to elucidate the constraints governing the evolution of biological systems. It is demonstrated that radiation theory is applicable to a wide range of sense organs, radiation types, wavelengths, and organisms.