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The Role of Gravitation in Physics: Report from the 1957 Chapel Hill Conference

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Book Series: Sources 5: Max Planck Research Library for the History and Development of Knowledge ISBN: 9783869319636 Year: Pages: 298 Language: English
Publisher: Edition Open Access
Added to DOAB on : 2017-03-07 12:49:35
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In January 1957, a group of physicists from several countries met at the University of North Carolina to discuss the role of gravitation in physics. The program was divided into two broad sections: unquantized and quantized general relativity. The first section included a review of classical relativity, its experimental tests, the initial value problem, gravitational radiation, equations of motion, and unified field theory. The second section included a discussion of the motivation for quantization, the problem of measurement, and the actual techniques for quantization. In both sections the relationship of general relativity to fundamental particles was discussed. In addition there was a session devoted to cosmological questions. A large part of the discussions is reproduced in the present report in an abridged form, followed by a conference summary statement by P. G. Bergmann.The Chapel Hill conference also marked the establishment of the Institute of Field Physics, directed by Bryce and Cécile DeWitt. The conference was the inaugural conference of this institute.

Traditions and Transformations in the History of Quantum Physics

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Book Series: Proceedings 5: Max Planck Research Library for the History and Development of Knowledge ISBN: 9783844251340 Year: Pages: 352 Language: English
Publisher: Edition Open Access
Added to DOAB on : 2017-03-07 13:05:10
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More than a century after the beginning of the quantum revolution, historians continue to explore new facets in the history of quantum physics, and to re-examine some of its better-known aspects. The thirteen papers collected in this volume, by authors from five continents, present central trends in the current study of quantum physics within its theoretical, experimental, philosophical, technological and social contexts. They discuss developments from the late nineteenth to the early twenty-first century and go beyond the traditional focus on Europe and North America to include China and Japan, and beyond the Heisenbergs and Diracs to reveal the role of actors who hitherto have played only a marginal role in historical account, but left their mark on the development of quantum physics. Also a wider array of subdisciplines comes into view, from optics to quantum gravity through quantum electrodynamics, from atomic and nuclear to condense matter physics and foundations of physics. Moreover, the volume shows that fields such as dispersion, physical chemistry and solid state physics should not be seen merely as areas of applications of ideas that evolved in other contexts, but should be regarded as birthplaces of important theoretical insights. The perspective of the papers ranges from local histories to global discussions, from conceptual changes via the role of experimentation to interactions with social and technological forces and to the interpretation of the theory.

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