3
votes
1answer
344 views

Definition of entropy in nonequilibrium states

Thermodynamical definition of entropy $$S(p)=-\int p\ln p~dx$$ is defined only on equilibrium system. But why can't we use it for non-equilibrium system? Is there a well-accepted definition for it?
3
votes
2answers
133 views

Can a $\gamma$-ray photon give some of his energy to an atom and accelerate it?

I know gamma-ray photon can only give its momentum energy to the electrons of an atom. My question is: Can a photon give some of its momentum to the atom (including its nucleus) to give it heat or ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

How can you calculate how fast a spinning ring/cylinder will accelerate a mass via gravitomagnetism? [duplicate]

Lets say you have a cylinder of length L, radius R, and mass M. How fast will it accelerate a mass of mass M2 that is entering the "throat" of the cylinder, considering the effects of ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Expanding universe space through matter or matter through space? [duplicate]

So the universe is expanding, rather space is expanding. By expanding we mean space is coming into existence at all points.  Is that an equal rate of expansion everywhere? Now the expansion does not ...
0
votes
1answer
402 views

How is electric field strength related to potential difference?

I was looking at the derivation of drift velocity of free electrons in a conductor in terms of relaxation time of electrons. Here a metallic conductor XY of length $\ell$ is considered and having ...
0
votes
1answer
189 views

Is real voltage always the real part of complex voltage?

If I have a complex voltage $V_z$ is real voltage $V$ (i.e. the voltage used in the normal ohms law and the voltage we normally talk about) always given by $V=Re(V_z)$. Does the same apply to current? ...
0
votes
1answer
69 views

When sliding down steep hill, is it safer to go down back or front against the hill? [closed]

Assume you are sliding down a steep hill. Is it safer to go down with your back against the hill or the front of your body against the hill? I assumed that since the surface area of your body which is ...
1
vote
1answer
171 views

Riemann curvature tensor notation in Wald

This question is entirely on tensorial notation in Wald's General Relativity. When specifying the properties of the Riemann tensor on pg39, he states: $R_{[abc]}^{\quad \ \ \ d} = 0$ and For the ...
0
votes
0answers
298 views

Wave Packets, Group velocity, and Phase velocity [duplicate]

Mathematically, you find that the wave function of a particle $\Psi (x,t)$ moves with the same velocity as the velocity of the particle ($v_{particle} = v_{group}$). Is there a reason why the ...
5
votes
5answers
783 views

Special Relativity, 2nd Postulate — Why? [duplicate]

As a lowly physics undergrad who has been chewing on this 2nd postulate of special relativity for a year or more, I simply can't wrap my head around reasons why it is true or how Einstein might have ...
0
votes
1answer
65 views

Regarding the 'Arrow of Time'

I read according to 'Newtonian' Mechanics any set of physical activity of particles can be reversed ( I think) so a set of complicated dynamic systems of particles and matter can reverse their '...
5
votes
5answers
7k views

Why are orbits elliptical? [duplicate]

Just wanted to know why planetary orbits get to be elliptical? I'm not debating how stable these orbits are (obviously almost completely stable), but why don't planets revolve in the special ellipse ...
1
vote
2answers
101 views

(Why) is dumping liquid nitrogen on your head dangerous?

A chemist who dumped liquid nitrogen on his head described the act as very dangerous; yet, at the same time, he mentioned that the Leidenfrost effect would protect him from the dangers of this act. ...
2
votes
1answer
113 views

Invariant tensors of Symplectic and Exceptional groups.

We know that for special orthogonal groups $SO(N)$ there exists invariant tensors (invariant under the group action). These are $\delta_{ij}$ and the totally anti-symmetric $\epsilon_{m_1,m_2,...m_N}$ ...
2
votes
1answer
231 views

Particle-hole symmetry and the sign of the superconducting gap

Time-reversal (TR) symmetry leads to topological insulator property. As expected, the topological invariant depends on TR (Pfaffian) operator. TR+particle-hole symmetry leads to topological ...
1
vote
0answers
65 views

Quantum to String: making the transition

We have a Hamiltonian containing a quantum simple harmonic oscillator coupled to a meter and a force. There is a term in the Hamiltonian that involves the oscillator position and the force, a term ...
0
votes
0answers
56 views

Definition of buoyancy

Hi I'm trying to figure out the definition of buoyancy, is this correct? So say for example I have 1 cubic meter of water which weighs 1 ton, and I placed a cubic foot of a material that at a 1 ton ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

An ideal condition in Heisenbergs uncertainity principle

We all know that the Heisenberg uncertainity principle implies $\Delta x\, \Delta p\geq\frac{\hbar}{2}.$ But is there an ideal condition where we can measure $\Delta x$ to a particular precision and ...
0
votes
3answers
122 views

Why the amount of entropy increase to a system is less when heat is added to a higher temperature system than to a lower one?

As I understand it, statistically this means that a fall from a high temperature (say $300\text{ K}$) to a middle temperature ($200\text{ K}$), and an increase from say ($100\text{ K}$) to ($200\text{ ...
0
votes
0answers
314 views

Close-packing of equal spheres - one sphere in a pyramid with a square base and four equilateral trianglular faces

I'm trying to determine the "packing efficiency" of fitting on sphere into a square based pyramidal container with four equilateral triangular faces. In other words, how much space within the pyramid ...
2
votes
1answer
575 views

How do you isolate a single photon?

How do scientists/researchers isolate a single photon (for single photon sources)? How do they know they have isolated it? Is it really totally "isolated"? What is the photon isolated in? Sorry if ...
2
votes
2answers
234 views

Hartle and Hawking's universal wavefunction

My apologies in advance if this question is poorly worded or doesn't make any sense, however I have just finished reading into this theory and it seems as though Hawkings No Boundary Universe is ...
0
votes
1answer
244 views

Dimensional Analysis in Electromagnetism (SI vs Gaussian-cgs)

Looking at Konopinski's formula for conjugate momentum (in the comment after equation 3 of "What the Vector Potential Describes"): p = M v + q A /c it is plain enough that M v is momentum, but if we ...
0
votes
3answers
155 views

The study of the physical universe [closed]

If physics is the study of the physical universe, wouldn't that mean chemistry, biology, neuroscience, zoology, history, economics, sociology, etc, wouldn't they all be subfields of physics? I believe ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

Special Relativity Question: Doppler shift

Imagine an observer watching a moving rocket carrying on it both, a light source and a clock. If on the rocket the clock is synchronized with the frequency of the light being emitted then will not a ...
-2
votes
1answer
184 views

If it takes less than a year to accelerate to the speed of light at 1g why will it take the Voyager 10,000 years to reach Alpha Centauri?

Today I was doing my physics homework and there was a problem involving a space ship falling at 9.8 m/(s^2) to simulate gravity, and it asked how long would it take for the ship to reach to speed of ...
3
votes
2answers
271 views

A mirror in the sky to look at past Earth

Earth reflects light from Sun into Space; are there any "mirror like" objects which reflect back to Earth this light? Has anyone been able to use this method to recover some information on how was the ...
0
votes
1answer
137 views

How much energy is necessary to set a year to exactly 360 days

How much energy would be necessary to slow down Earth rotation such that a year was 360 days long? In the same spirit: how much energy would be necessary to make the Earth rotate faster around the ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

Sums of operators in practice

Consider a one dimensional harmonic oscillator. We have: $$\hat{n} = \hat{a}^{\dagger} \hat{a} = \frac{m \omega}{2 \hbar} \hat{x}^2 + \frac{1}{2 \hbar m \omega} \hat{p}^2 - \frac{1}{2}$$ And: $$\...
2
votes
1answer
190 views

Motivating the ansatz for the infinitesimal translation operator

I'm reading Sakurai's Modern QM right now and in the first chapter he states a number of conditions required for a translation operator: unitarity, $$T(\mathrm{d}\mathbf{x})T(\mathrm{d}\mathbf{x^\...
-4
votes
1answer
153 views

About how much force would something have to exert to be effectively unstoppable? [closed]

Assuming an object is moving in a straight line propelled by a force. How much energy would that force have to exert so that there are no known forces or objects that could stop it from moving in that ...
0
votes
1answer
163 views

Is the photoelectric effect a type of nuclear decay?

If the frequency of light is $f$ and if $f \ge f_t$, where $f_t$ is the threshold frequency, electrons are emitted if light is shined on a metal surface. By my understanding, the light comes in and is ...
1
vote
2answers
341 views

Using sinusoids to represent sound waves

Having some free time, I've begun a mini-project attempting to understand how music works in more detail, which has so far only involved music theory and a bit of set theory. I'm now trying to get my ...
3
votes
2answers
309 views

Paradox while Cooling & Heating in Air? [duplicate]

I was thinking about how asteroids get "burned" up in the upper atmosphere as they approach the earth surface due to the atmosphere of earth heating the asteroids immensely as a result of air ...
2
votes
1answer
295 views

Why three families of multipole moments?

There are three families of multipole moments: The electric multipole moments, the magnetic multipole moments and the toroidal multipole moments. Is there any reason why there are this three families ...
7
votes
2answers
647 views

Can resistance be directional?

When we think of resistance, we always think of a scalar value associated with a piece of a material. After all, resistance is but resistivity times surface geometry. But can resistance be ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

How did tension developed in a string when two equal and opposite forces are applied on the same body?

As per Newton's 3rd law every action has an equal and opposite reaction, but both of these forces are on different bodies under consideration Now when a single body (say rope in this case) is ...
3
votes
2answers
179 views

Do atoms produce synchrotron radiation?

Since synchrotron radiation is created when charged particles are radially accelerated and electrons are definitely orbiting a nucleus (assuming a Bohr model), electron should then logically emit ...
1
vote
2answers
195 views

Finding the current in a parallel circuit [closed]

Two resistors are joined as shown. The top resistor receives a current of 3 A. What is the current in the other resistor? What is the current that enters at junction A? I'm confused on how the two ...
1
vote
0answers
92 views

Spin in relativity

Mass and spin of the particle are used in classification of elementary particles. The mass is defined to be a Lorentz invariant quantity. On the other hand, the spin is a spacelike 4-vector and cannot ...
1
vote
2answers
121 views

What is the reason for the $ i \tau_2 $ - factor in the higgs coupling with up-type quarks?

The quark mass term in the Standard Model Lagrangian looks like this: $$ L = - \lambda_d \bar{Q}\phi d_R - \lambda_u \bar{Q} i \tau_2 \phi^* u_R $$ What is the reason for the $ i \tau_2 $ - factor?...
1
vote
0answers
73 views

Calculus of variations applied to a rotating liquid

I thought I knew how to use calculus of variations, but then I started thinking about the problem of a rotating liquid and it confused me a great deal. It would be nice to hear your thoughts on the ...
2
votes
1answer
141 views

Tension in a chain around a cone

A chain of some mass, forming a circle, is slipped on a smooth cone. If we consider an infinitesimally small section of the chain, a component of gravity will try to accelerate it along the surface of ...
5
votes
2answers
669 views

Number of blades in a fan

How does the number of blades in a fan affect the flux of air? I read that 3 blades are the best option but some companies uses more blades because there's a misconception among people that more ...
0
votes
1answer
134 views

How to create antineutrons?

Creating a beam of antiprotons allows to create antineutrons by charge exchange. How does this exchange work? The question pops up after the question "Is there a strong evidence of antineutron ...
2
votes
1answer
520 views

Why is water vapor released when an empty water bottle is squeezed?

I recently came across this tutorial and wondered why vapor will come out when the cap comes off. Heres the Tutorial
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Atomic absorption question

My book says that when a photon carrying a certain amount of energy hits an electron, that gets excited and goes on an higher energetic level, absorbing the energy of the photon. When it comes back to ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Can we measure a mass increase for a system with more energy?

This question is about whether the mass of a particle increases with its speed. Here is my related question from which this question spawned: Why is there a controversy on whether mass increases with ...
3
votes
1answer
500 views

How is weight distributed when legs are astride?

Is there a simple and quick formula to find the weight (the force acting) on each leg, especially when legs are astride and they are not equally stretched? (or, better) not equally distant from the ...
3
votes
0answers
24 views

Symmetry breaking under isothermal expansion

Is there any example of a symmetry breaking phase transition in a system of particles under isothermal expansion?

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