1
vote
2answers
390 views

What is Diffraction?

Diffraction is just light interacting with small objects, and bending, but this seems like a very imprecise definition to me. What is diffraction, actually? I was confused because there are at least ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

Potential energy from opposing magnets repelling each other with a gap of 1 mm

I have two powerful rare earth magnets, that are separated by a distance of 1 mm. I applied energy to bring them closer to each other, hence increasing the potential energy. Now, when one of the ...
3
votes
1answer
238 views

Why does adding milk to my coffee produce a fractal?

Whenever I add milk to my morning coffee I often enjoy watching the patterns which are created. These patterns have a striking resemblance to certain fractals and my question is, "Why?" Oh dear, that ...
3
votes
2answers
982 views

How do I figure out the momentum of a water balloon when it reaches the person I am throwing it at?

Recently an experiment was performed in which myself and a partner filled a water balloon and threw it back and forth at each other without breaking it. We gradually increased the distance at which it ...
0
votes
1answer
149 views

If an electron can't go faster than light, how is energy conserved here?

I came across a physics question recently about accelerating electrons with potential differences and it got me wondering. Here is the question that brought the concept to mind. First off, imagine ...
1
vote
1answer
443 views

Null lines and degenerate plane

Can anyone explain me what null lines are and degenerate plane? I don't know anything about it, I don't have physics background and I am a mathematics student and please tell me if there is any good ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

Gravitational collapse and free fall time (spherical, pressure-free)

A very large number of small particles forms a spherical cloud. Initially they are at rest, have uniform mass density per unit volume $\rho_0$, and occupy a region of radius $r_0$. The cloud collapses ...
1
vote
3answers
1k views

Where does this derivation of the equation of motion for a simple pendulum go wrong?

I am attempting to derive the following equation of motion for a simple pendulum: $$\theta''(t) = - \frac{g}{l} \sin(\theta).$$ For background, see this Wikipedia article. I understand this page ...
0
votes
3answers
1k views

Wave Function for a Sinusoidal Wave (Why minus sign?)

I was trying to understand how the wave function for a sinusoidal wave was derived, but did not understand one specific sign, the minus sign in the following formula: $$y(x,t) = A \sin(k x – \omega t ...
0
votes
1answer
150 views

Question on measuring expectation value of spin with time variation

I have a particle with the following wave function: $$\psi(t) = \frac12 |\uparrow \rangle e^{-i(\omega_1+\omega_2)t/\hbar} +\frac12 |\uparrow \rangle e^{-i(\omega_1-\omega_2)t/\hbar} +\frac{1}{\sqrt{...
4
votes
2answers
722 views

Is Newton's third compatible with retarded Lorentz force?

In Griffiths Introduction to electrodynamics it is said that Newton's third law is not valid in electrodynamics, but, in the example given, the it does not consider the retarded values for the fields ...
1
vote
1answer
396 views

Spinor inner products

The spinor inner product in particle physics is given by $\overline{\psi} \psi = \psi^{\dagger} \gamma_0 \psi $, where I take the convention that the zeroth gamma matrix is hermitian while the rest ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

Calculating axle load in cargo container (pics are included)

I'm current developing cargo loader software, but i have a little challenge with calculating load for each axle when a cargo is placed on container. I know that all axles will be affected (the nearest ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Gauge Invariance of the Hamiltonian of the electromagnetic field

The Hamiltonian for an electron of mass $m$ and charge $e$ in an exterior electromagnetic field is $$H=\frac{1}{2m}(p-(e/c)A)^2+e\varphi.$$ The corresponding (via canonical quantization) quantum ...
2
votes
0answers
470 views

Understanding spherically symmetric metric

In these lecture notes the static isotropic metric is treated as follows (p. 71): Take a spherically symmetric, bounded, static distribution of matter, then we will have a spherically symmetric ...
1
vote
1answer
106 views

Function describing an adiabatic process

I understand that an isothermic process, plotted on a PV diagram, can be described by a rectangular hyperbola. However, now I am wondering, what about an adiabatic process, what function best ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Unable to resolve 2 equivalent geodesic equations

A free particle moves along geodesics, one form being \begin{split} \ddot x^\mu &= -\Gamma^{\mu}_{\sigma \rho} \dot x^\sigma \dot x^\rho \\ &= -\frac{1}{2}g^{\mu \nu}(\partial_\sigma g_{\rho \...
0
votes
2answers
124 views

What is a degenerate Fermi gas?

In ultracold atoms, it is generally talked of a degenerate Fermi gas. What does degenerate mean here?
0
votes
2answers
90 views

Simulating how comets travel with Newtonian physics

Imagine that a comet enters the solar system from Oort cloud, what concepts and laws does one need to take into consideration to simulate how it travels? I'm about to start researching how to write ...
0
votes
1answer
187 views

If the universe could emerge from nothing, what about physical laws? [closed]

I've watched Lawrence Krauss's lecture and read his book. I think I got what he was saying, and I don't have any problems with that; however, what I can't get is how the laws of physics that makes ...
0
votes
0answers
545 views

How can one calculate the distance a particular sound will travel?

What do you need and how to calculate a distance traveled by sound? For example if you hit a bell with a specific amount of power how far will it travel?
9
votes
3answers
355 views

Is the Copenhagen interpretation merely an approximation to quantum mechanics?

So, I'm reading Max Tegmark's Our Mathematical Universe (Knopf edition, p. 229). He's discussing Everett/MWI for a bit and I'm not really paying attention and then I wake up to this: [I]t's time ...
3
votes
2answers
65 views

How should I interpret an article about light being slowed and compressed?

I've found an article describing a method that allowed the light to be "slowed and compressed"... That sounds really strange, which made me google a lot and find this PDF document. However for me, ...
3
votes
4answers
171 views

Coherence effect on collecting sun light by mirrors

There are systems that collect sun light in one spot. I wonder, why does it accumulate additively, without destructive interference?
4
votes
1answer
206 views

Does the projected spin state of the $d+id$ mean-field Hamiltonian on a triangular lattice has time-reversal(TR) symmetry?

Consider the following $d+id$ mean-field Hamiltonian for a spin-1/2 model on a triangular lattice $$H=\sum_{<ij>}(\psi_i^\dagger\chi_{ij}\psi_j+H.c.)$$, with $\chi_{ij}=\begin{pmatrix} 0 & \...
0
votes
1answer
553 views

Two body particle problem with reduced mass

When we have two bodies and a central force acting towards the center of each other, we could treat the whole problem as a one body problem by introducing the relative coordinate. My question is, when ...
1
vote
0answers
41 views

Solid state diffusion as a function of shear stress

I am hoping to get some clarification on the impact of shear stress or shear strain on atomic diffusion in a metallic solid. More specifically, will the kinetics for the dissolution of secondary phase ...
3
votes
1answer
187 views

General motion of a cone on an inclined surface

Suppose that a solid cone is placed horizontally on an inclined surface and is initially at rest. How will the cone move when it starts motion due to its weight? I know that its motion depends on the ...
1
vote
0answers
139 views

Basic introductory quantum mechanics question [closed]

Given that $\psi = \frac{1}{\sqrt{32 \pi a_{0}^{3}}}(2-\frac{r}{a_0})exp(\frac{-r}{2a_0})$ is a wavefunction of the hydrogen atom, write down the probability density for r and calculate the ratio for $...
4
votes
1answer
282 views

Chiral Spin Liquid(CSL), Chern number, and the ground state degeneracy(GSD)

Consider a 2D gapped CSL with a nonzero Chern number $m$, then is the GSD of the system on a torus directly related to the Chern number $m$? For example, see this article, in the last paragraph on ...
4
votes
1answer
115 views

Invariants of Connection Form

I am somewhat going out "on a limb" here, since I am much more grounded in the physics side of things than I am in mathematics. Nonetheless, I am wondering if someone is able to comment on the ...
0
votes
0answers
87 views

Proofs on Quantum Inequalities?

Are there any experimental proofs witch support The Quantum inequalities and The Quantum interest conjecture?
0
votes
0answers
31 views

Work of an adiabatic/ compresion: sign?

As far as I am concerned the adiabatic work it is given by: $$ W_{adi}=\frac{P_{f}V_{f}-P_{i}V_{i}}{\gamma -1}$$ While I have seen in other examples that it is used with $1-\gamma$ in the ...
0
votes
1answer
59 views

Earthing or nothing

Sometimes, mostly in winter, when somebody touches the tap it passes current (especially when the hands are soaked in water or soap water). I read 3-4 years back in physics book that the tap circuit ...
4
votes
0answers
135 views

Coleman-Mandula theorem in mathematical language

Every supersymmetry text starts off mentioning the Coleman-Mandula theorem. Often it is introduced using rather colloquial terminology. I was wondering if anyone knew a precise mathematical ...
1
vote
3answers
318 views

Dielectric constant of water

I need the dielectric constant of water from $10^{-2}$ Hz to $10^4$ Hz. As stupid as it may seem, I cannot find much info. I've googled for days. All I can find is close to GHz. And the only info ...
2
votes
2answers
334 views

Reunion condition in the Twin Paradox

In the Twin Paradox two twins initially at rest in the same reference frame are separated and take different journeys through spacetime. Eventually they are reunited. What is the condition for the ...
1
vote
4answers
582 views

Is it possible to sky dive without a parachute and land safely?

Let's assume an averaged sized man (1.8 meters height 80 kg) who's sky-diving from a 5000 m height. Let's also assume he's using tight clothes and no parachute. The idea is: Is it possible for him ...
0
votes
2answers
127 views

Spoon released out of a satelite moving with orbital velocity

Suppose we are in a satelite revolving around the earth with a velocity equal to orbital velocity. Now if we release a spoon from the satelite then will it reach the earth or will it just revolve ...
1
vote
3answers
205 views

Understanding voltage

I understand that water flows because of height difference and current flows because of potential dfference. Now, in this analogy, I can understand height but I fail to realise what potential is. Is ...
2
votes
0answers
487 views

equation of motion for the scalar field via variational principle in general relativity

I would like to find the equation of motion for the scalar field $\phi$ by varying the following action in General Relativity. Special Relativity: $$ S = -\tfrac{1}{2}\int d^4\xi\, \eta^{ab} \...
4
votes
2answers
211 views

Why does the colour wheel wrap around?

Red colour bares 430-480THz and Violet bares 670-750THz according to Wikipedia. What frequencies are the colours between red and violet? Will they be higher than red? or lower than violet? What ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Are all spin states orthogonal?

For a spin 1/2 particle you have two spin states, either up or down which are orthogonal. But what about a spin 1 particle which has 3 spin states, either up, down, not up/not down?
1
vote
2answers
1k views

What is the difference between diamagnetism and superconductivity?

Basically, What is the difference diamagnetism and superconductivity? As far as I understand, diamagnetism comes from the fact, that all electrons in a solid, when exerted by an external magnetic ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

What is solid- solid transformation?

I found this solid-solid transformation in wikipedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phase_transition#Types_of_phase_transition Please tell me what it is? It's present in types of phase transition in ...
1
vote
1answer
130 views

Eigenvalues of the Spin Operator on a two-spin-system

I am not sure if I understand spin operators correctly. Given a two spin system in state $|++\rangle$ and an operator $S = S^{(1)} + S^{(2)}$ Then I have $$ S_z |++\rangle = (S^{(1)}_z + S^{(2)}_z) ...
2
votes
2answers
87 views

Frequency of Light Near a Massive Object

We know that near a massive object, light's wavelength and frequency changes, but its speed remains same. I'd like to know how it is possible for frequency to change, unless we change the light source?...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

To which state of matter does the flame belong to?

I had this question from the day(9 years old, now 16) that i learned about states of matter. I have asked so many of my teachers some of them told me gas some as plasma etc. can anyone answer my ...
0
votes
1answer
567 views

Proof of the time-independent Schrödinger equation

I have a question regarding the proof of the time-independent Schrödinger equation. So if we have a time-Independent Hamiltonian, we can solve the Schrödinger equation by adopting separation of ...
2
votes
1answer
117 views

The force exerted on a magnetic dipole $m$ in magnetic field $B$

How can one prove that: The force exerted on a magnetic dipole $m$ in magnetic field $B$, in addition to $F=\nabla(m\cdot B)$, can be expressed by $$F=(m\times \nabla)\times B.$$

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