By Sébastien Balibar
Where is mankind situated within the Universe? What is going on inside of atoms? used to be Einstein regularly correct? do we locate extraterrestrial lifestyles within the close to destiny? And what might be performed approximately worldwide warming? Sébastien Balibar, a number one authority in physics, makes use of illuminating tales from his personal lifestyles to reply to the main exciting questions within the actual sciences this present day. The Atom and the Apple considers features of our environment--the issues we see round us, yet seldom really understand--and indicates that technological know-how will be an exhilarating event grounded within the phenomena of the day-by-day world.
Balibar examines twelve difficulties spanning the frontiers of physics, and he devotes a bankruptcy to every factor. He appears to be like at chaos thought, cosmology, fluid mechanics, and climatology. He explains how we came across the age of the Earth, how we all know the Universe is increasing ever extra speedily, and why the spiral styles of pinecones and sunflowers are on the topic of the Golden Ratio in arithmetic. He scrutinizes how the collective habit of atoms ends up in such remarkable effects as lasers, superconductors, or superfluids. As Balibar invitations us to understand the physics hidden in the points of interest and sounds of the wildlife, he additionally recounts the reviews of his adolescence and occupation that have been pivotal to his lifelong ardour for science.
Written for basic readers, The Atom and the Apple explores interesting points of our global, and demonstrates why the pursuit of medical wisdom is easily worthy everyone's time, despite medical background.
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The place is mankind situated within the Universe? What is going on within atoms? used to be Einstein continually correct? do we locate extraterrestrial lifestyles within the close to destiny? And what will be performed approximately international warming? Sébastien Balibar, a number one authority in physics, makes use of illuminating tales from his personal lifestyles to reply to the main interesting questions within the actual sciences this present day.
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Additional info for The Atom and the Apple. 12 Tales from Contemporary Physics
Relativity and quantum mechanics were still in their youth. Einstein had overturned our ordinary conceptions of space and time, established a relation between mass and energy (the famous equation E = mc2), and afﬁrmed that the laws of classical mechanics, those of Galileo and Newton, needed to be modiﬁed once the speed of the objects being considered approaches a universal constant, namely the speed of light. ) For its part, quantum mechanics had undertaken to describe the behavior of particles as though they were waves, which was no small thing, but its central equation, Schrödinger’s equation, was only valid if the speed of the particles was small compared to the speed of light.
You might think that that consists of writing equations to describe measurements which have been performed and in general, predicting what the results of future measurements will be—if we change certain conditions of an experiment, for example. But I know few physicists who rest content with that. pdf WBG Soft Proof 4/21/08 2:51:48 PM Pg 43 EINSTEIN, THE FLUTE, AND QUANTUM DEW vent them from in fact preferring, at the end of the day, a kind of intuition rooted in analogies—even approximate ones.
So we are starting to think that to conserve water on a planet’s surface requires a relatively stable axis of rotation which doesn’t point towards the Sun, like that of the Earth. But the Earth’s axis is stable only because it’s stabilized by the Moon: the Moon is not a small satellite—it’s size is comparable with that of the Earth, and as you know from the tides, the movements of both are linked. So, it seems that in order to detect life on a planet’s surface, we may have to discover an exo-Earth with an exo-Moon, and that makes things complicated.
The Atom and the Apple. 12 Tales from Contemporary Physics by Sébastien Balibar