Read e-book online A user's guide to the Universe PDF

By Goldberg D., Blomquist J.

ISBN-10: 0470496517

ISBN-13: 9780470496510

Solutions to science's such a lot enduring questions from "Can I holiday the light-speed barrier like on megastar Trek?" and "Is there existence on different planets?" to "What is empty house made of?"This is an critical consultant to physics that gives readers an summary of the preferred physics subject matters written in an obtainable, irreverent, and fascinating demeanour whereas nonetheless preserving a tone of wry skepticism. Even the beginner may be in a position to stick to alongside, because the subject matters are addressed utilizing simple English and (almost) no equations. Veterans of renowned physics also will locate their nagging questions addressed, like even if the universe can extend swifter than mild, and for that subject, what the universe is increasing into anyway.Gives a one-stop travel of all of the monstrous questions that seize the general public mind's eye together with string concept, quantum mechanics, parallel universes, and the start of timeExplains severe technological know-how in an interesting, conversational, and easy-to-understand wayIncludes dozens of delightfully groan-worthy cartoons that designate every little thing from specific relativity to darkish Matter Filled with interesting details and insights, this publication will either deepen and remodel your realizing of the universe.

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We are left with a couple of staggering implications: 1. Our observations of a system fundamentally change it. 2. Individual photons can behave like particles or waves, and can switch between the two in the blink of an eye. If you look at them closely enough, what are electrons, really? The strangeness of quantum mechanics would be all well and good if it only corresponded to light. Light is special; after all, it’s massless and, like a sailor, constantly moving at c. The problem, as you may have guessed, is that the effects of quantum mechanics seem to extend beyond photons.

43 44 A U ser ’s G uide to the Universe Scientists had observed that if you shine a beam of ultraviolet light on metals, electrons will pop out. On the other hand, exposing the same metal to less energetic wavelengths produced no effect. Einstein reasoned that the only possible explanation for this phenomenon, dubbed the photoelectric effect, was that light must be fundamentally made of individual particles, which then each transfer their energy to a single electron. It’s like hitting a billiard ball with a cueball, and that sounds more like a particle than a wave, right?

If you passed the classical intuition quiz, then you are in excellent company. Sir Isaac Newton (and his successors) helped us to build trains, cars, and even spaceships based on strong classical intuition. And unless you, personally, are designing microchips, there’s a fair bet that virtually all of the interactions in your everyday life are classical as well. But there’s a lot going on beneath the hood, and if you look closely enough, the physical world is really ruled by the microscopic realm of quantum mechanics.

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A user's guide to the Universe by Goldberg D., Blomquist J.


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