boltzmanns atom

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Boltzmanns Atom

Author : David Lindley
ISBN : 9781501142673
Genre : Science
File Size : 27. 64 MB
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In 1900 many eminent scientists did not believe atoms existed, yet within just a few years the atomic century launched into history with an astonishing string of breakthroughs in physics that began with Albert Einstein and continues to this day. Before this explosive growth into the modern age took place, an all-but-forgotten genius strove for forty years to win acceptance for the atomic theory of matter and an altogether new way of doing physics. Ludwig Boltz-mann battled with philosophers, the scientific establishment, and his own potent demons. His victory led the way to the greatest scientific achievements of the twentieth century. Now acclaimed science writer David Lindley portrays the dramatic story of Boltzmann and his embrace of the atom, while providing a window on the civilized world that gave birth to our scientific era. Boltzmann emerges as an endearingly quixotic character, passionately inspired by Beethoven, who muddled through the practical matters of life in a European gilded age. Boltzmann's story reaches from fin de siècle Vienna, across Germany and Britain, to America. As the Habsburg Empire was crumbling, Germany's intellectual might was growing; Edinburgh in Scotland was one of the most intellectually fertile places on earth; and, in America, brilliant independent minds were beginning to draw on the best ideas of the bureaucratized old world. Boltzmann's nemesis in the field of theoretical physics at home in Austria was Ernst Mach, noted today in the term Mach I, the speed of sound. Mach believed physics should address only that which could be directly observed. How could we know that frisky atoms jiggling about corresponded to heat if we couldn't see them? Why should we bother with theories that only told us what would probably happen, rather than making an absolute prediction? Mach and Boltzmann both believed in the power of science, but their approaches to physics could not have been more opposed. Boltzmann sought to explain the real world, and cast aside any philosophical criteria. Mach, along with many nineteenth-century scientists, wanted to construct an empirical edifice of absolute truths that obeyed strict philosophical rules. Boltzmann did not get on well with authority in any form, and he did his best work at arm's length from it. When at the end of his career he engaged with the philosophical authorities in the Viennese academy, the results were personally disastrous and tragic. Yet Boltzmann's enduring legacy lives on in the new physics and technology of our wired world. Lindley's elegant telling of this tale combines the detailed breadth of the best history, the beauty of theoretical physics, and the psychological insight belonging to the finest of novels.

Anxiety And The Equation

Author : Eric Johnson
ISBN : 9780262038614
Genre : Science
File Size : 50. 78 MB
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A man and his equation: the anxiety-plagued nineteenth-century physicist who contributed significantly to our understanding of the second law of thermodynamics. Ludwig Boltzmann's grave in Vienna's Central Cemetery bears a cryptic epitaph: S = k log W. This equation was Boltzmann's great discovery, and it contributed significantly to our understanding of the second law of thermodynamics. In Anxiety and the Equation, Eric Johnson tells the story of a man and his equation: the anxiety-plagued nineteenth-century physicist who did his most important work as he struggled with mental illness. Johnson explains that “S” in Boltzmann's equation refers to entropy, and that entropy is the central quantity in the second law of thermodynamics. The second law is always on, running in the background of our lives, providing a way to differentiate between past and future. We know that the future will be a state of higher entropy than the past, and we have Boltzmann to thank for discovering the equation that underlies that fundamental trend. Johnson, accessibly and engagingly, reassembles Boltzmann's equation from its various components and presents episodes from Boltzmann's life—beginning at the end, with “Boltzmann Kills Himself” and “Boltzmann Is Buried (Not Once, But Twice).” Johnson explains the second law in simple terms, introduces key concepts through thought experiments, and explores Boltzmann's work. He argues that Boltzmann, diagnosed by his contemporaries as neurasthenic, suffered from an anxiety disorder. He was, says Johnson, a man of reason who suffered from irrational concerns about his work, worrying especially about opposition from the scientific establishment of the day. Johnson's clear and concise explanations will acquaint the nonspecialist reader with such seemingly esoteric concepts as microstates, macrostates, fluctuations, the distribution of energy, log functions, and equilibrium. He describes Boltzmann's relationships with other scientists, including Max Planck and Henri Poincaré, and, finally, imagines “an alternative ending,” in which Boltzmann lived on and died of natural causes.

Das Ende Der Physik

Author : David Lindley
ISBN : 9783034861939
Genre : Juvenile Nonfiction
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Atoms Mechanics And Probability

Author : Olivier Darrigol
ISBN : 9780198816171
Genre :
File Size : 43. 21 MB
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One of the pillars of modern science, statistical mechanics, owes much to one man, the Austrian physicist Ludwig Boltzmann (1844-1906). As a result of his unusual working and writing styles, his enormous contribution remains little read and poorly understood. The purpose of this book is to make the Boltzmann corpus more accessible to physicists, philosophers, and historians, and so give it new life. The means are introductory biographical and historical materials, detailed and lucid summaries of every relevant publication, and a final chapter of critical synthesis. Special attention is given to Boltzmann's theoretical tool-box and to his patient construction of lofty formal systems even before their full conceptual import could be known. This constructive tendency largely accounts for his lengthy style, for the abundance of new constructions, for the relative vagueness of their object--and for the puzzlement of commentators. This book will help the reader cross the stylistic barrier and see how ingeniously Boltzmann combined atoms, mechanics, and probability to invent new bridges between the micro- and macro-worlds.

Ludwig Boltzmann

Author : Carlo Cercignani
ISBN : 9780191606984
Genre : Science
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This book presents the life and personality, the scientific and philosophical work of Ludwig Boltzmann, one of the great scientists who marked the passage from 19th- to 20th-Century physics. His rich and tragic life, ending by suicide at the age of 62, is described in detail. A substantial part of the book is devoted to discussing his scientific and philosophical ideas and placing them in the context of the second half of the 19th century. The fact that Boltzmann was the man who did most to establish that there is a microscopic, atomic structure underlying macroscopic bodies is documented, as is Boltzmann's influence on modern physics, especially through the work of Planck on light quanta and of Einstein on Brownian motion. Boltzmann was the centre of a scientific upheaval, and he has been proved right on many crucial issues. He anticipated Kuhn's theory of scientific revolutions and proposed a theory of knowledge based on Darwin. His basic results, when properly understood, can also be stated as mathematical theorems. Some of these have been proved: others are still at the level of likely but unproven conjectures. The main text of this biography is written almost entirely without equations. Mathematical appendices deepen knowledge of some technical aspects of the subject.

Seeking Ultimates

Author : Peter T. Landsberg
ISBN : 1420046950
Genre : Science
File Size : 56. 56 MB
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Seeking Ultimates: An Intuitive Guide to Physics, Second Edition takes us on a journey that explores the limits of our scientific knowledge, emphasizing the gaps that are left. The book starts with everyday concepts such as temperature, and proceeds to energy, the Periodic Table, and then to more advanced ideas. The author examines the nature of time and entropy, chaos, quantum theory, cosmology, and some aspects of mathematics, confirming that our understanding is necessarily incomplete. Using references to historical figures in science as well as thought-provoking illustrations, Seeking Ultimates encourages you to consider your scientific knowledge in a new light. You will be able to reassess your belief in "truths" as presented (such as mathematical theorems) and to reconsider philosophical issues of theology and happiness. A comprehensive glossary explains in clear language the technical terms so that nonscientists can enjoy the text.

Boltzmann S Legacy

Author : Giovanni Gallavotti
ISBN : 3037190574
Genre : Science
File Size : 24. 54 MB
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Original Scientific Papers Wissenschaftliche Originalarbeiten

Author :
ISBN : 9783642700781
Genre : Mathematics
File Size : 34. 5 MB
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This second Series A volume of Werner Heisenberg's Collected Works covers a period of about 15 years beginning with the early papers on quantum field theory in 1929/30 and ending with those on the scattering matrix (up to 1946). The reader will find Heisenberg contributions to Dirac's theory of the electron, to nuclear physics, to cosmic ray phenomena, and to reactor physics. The papers on the Uranium Project, classified for a long time and never fully published before, will certainly attract a wide audience. As in the first volume, each group of papers is furnished with an introduction in English by an eminent scientist. The contributing scientists are: R. Haag, A. Pais, C.F. von Weizsäcker, E. Bagge, K. Wirtz, and R. Oehme.

Programming The Universe

Author : Seth Lloyd
ISBN : 9781446475874
Genre : Science
File Size : 33. 2 MB
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IN THE BEGINNING WAS THE BIT... The universe is made of bits of information and it has been known for more than a century that every piece of the the universe - every electron, atom and molecule - registers these bits and that information. It is only in the last years, however, with the discovery and development of quantum computers, that scientists have gained a fundamental understanding of just how that information is registered and processed. Building on recent breakthroughs in quantum computation, Seth Lloyd shows how the universe itself is a giant computer. Every atom and elementary particle stores these bits, and every collision between those atoms and particles flips the bits into a new arrangement and effortlessly spins out beautiful and complex systems, including galaxies, planets and life itself. But every computer needs a program, the set of instructions that tell it what patterns to create. Where did the bits come from that tell the universe to create its magnificent complexity? Who - or what - is programming the universe?

Principien Der Naturfilosofi

Author : Ludwig Boltzmann
ISBN : STANFORD:36105043184626
Genre : Science
File Size : 69. 53 MB
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Ludwig Boltzmanns bekannte Vorlesung ueber Naturfilosofi von 1903-1906 wird hier zum ersten Mal der A-ffentlichkeit vorgestellt. Der Autor behandelt grundlegende Konzepte der Mathematik (Zahlenlehre und Geometrie), er diskutiert physikalische Begriffe wie Materie, Raum-Zeit, KrA1/4mmung des Universums, sowie den Farbenraum. Daneben findet man philosophische Betrachtungen, vor allem eine ausfA1/4hrliche Auseinandersetzung mit Schopenhauer, und Bemerkungen zu den schAnen KA1/4nsten. Der Vorlesung vorangestellt ist eine kurze, reich bebilderte Biographie, ein Essay von S.G. Brush A1/4ber Boltzmann und eine EinfA1/4hrung in die Vorlesung von G. Fasol.

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