Richard Feynman: Quarks, Bombs, and Bongos (Makers of Modern by Harry Henderson

By Harry Henderson

Defined by means of his friends because the ""finest physicist of his generation,"" Richard Feynman defied scientist stereotypes. This brash New York-born American physicist startled the extra conservative giants of eu physics along with his unending skill to improvise. certainly, later in lifestyles, Feynman grew to become an complete bongo participant. Feynman's legacy to physics was once his skill to simplify complicated equations and make clear primary ideas by using graphs. He constructed the speculation of quantum electrodynamics, which illustrates the habit of electrically charged debris, comparable to electrons, and their interplay with electromagnetic radiation. From his calculations as a part of the big apple venture group to his function investigating the Challenger house commute explosion, this in actual fact written identify delves into the attention-grabbing existence and paintings of this influential scientist.

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Extra resources for Richard Feynman: Quarks, Bombs, and Bongos (Makers of Modern Science)

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He considered many of the ideas in these fields to be illogical or pretentious. It seemed to him that while philosophers might ask interesting questions, they had no reliable method for finding any answers. He did dabble a bit in writing poetry. In general, Feynman seemed to skate through these courses without learning much, while managing to get decent marks. Only later in life would he return to the arts as a way to express his creativity. Even at MIT, student life was not all lectures and study.

About 2,500 years ago, the Greek philosopher Democritus concluded that at some point there must be something that cannot be cut into anything smaller. He called these hypothetical objects atoms (“atom” is a Greek word meaning “not cuttable”). Atomic theory did not seem to be of practical use until modern chemistry began to develop in the 17th century. The British chemist Robert Boyle proposed that matter is made up of combinations of atoms. In the next century, the French scientist Antoine Lavoisier identified certain substances (such as carbon or oxygen) as being fundamental elements that could not be broken down into simpler substances.

Cosmic rays are actually high-energy particles. From Earth’s point of view, they seem to come equally from all directions. This was puzzling to physicists. The stars in our galaxy (the Milky Way) are not distributed evenly through space. If cosmic rays came from stars 28 Richard Feynman in our galaxy, they would be expected to be unevenly distributed as well. Even if cosmic rays came from outside the galaxy, Vallarta believed that the magnetic field of the stars should scatter nearby cosmic rays so they would show an uneven pattern.

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