3
votes
3answers
305 views

Does the second law of thermodynamics tell me how the entropy changes?

In thermodynamics I can e.g. compute the properties of ideal gases with certain energies $U_1,U_2$ in boxes with certain volumes $V_1$ and $V_2$. Say I have two such boxes and they have some specific ...
7
votes
2answers
485 views

More questions on string theory and the standard model

This is a followup question to How does string theory reduce to the standard model? Ron Maimon's answer there clarified to some extent what can be expected from string theory, but left details open ...
28
votes
4answers
2k views

Does the universe have a center?

If the big bang was the birth of everything, and the big bang was an event in the sense that it had a location and a time (time 0), wouldn't that mean that our universe has a center? Where was the ...
9
votes
3answers
648 views

Why does large curvature of spacetime imply high temperature?

I`ve just stumbled about a sentence which says that high curvature of spacetime implies that any matter present is at high temperature. This somehow confuses me, so my probably dumb question(s) are: ...
0
votes
1answer
73 views

Are a measured object always part of the theory?

Is there a notion of measurement, which doesn't correspond to a yes/no question or with the idea of the comparison of two real world objects, which produces a real number? And does at least one of ...
6
votes
2answers
527 views

Entanglement and relativity

Two observers A and B measure a quantum entangled state and obtain correlated results, even if their separation is space-like (each is out of the light cone of the other). A possible interpretation is ...
4
votes
1answer
251 views

Is this formula for the energy of a configuration of 3 fluids physically reasonable?

I have studied for a couple of months now a mathematical model of the energy of a configuration of immiscible fluids situated in a fixed container such that the fluids fill the container. In other ...
2
votes
1answer
548 views

Generators of the lorentz group

I have the following minus sign problem: Consider an infinitesimal Lorentz transformation for which $\Lambda^{\mu}_{\nu}=\delta^{\mu}_{\nu}+\lambda^{\mu}_{\nu}$, where $\lambda^{\mu}_{\nu}$ is ...
4
votes
1answer
325 views

Wick Order and Radial Ordering in CFT

I am not so much familiar with the computations tools of conformal field theory, and I just run into an exercise asking to demonstrate the following formula (related to the bosonic field case): ...
4
votes
4answers
9k views

In electrostatics, why the conductor is an equipotential surface?

Since the electric field inside a conductor is zero that means the potential is constant inside a conductor, which means the "inside" of a conductor is an equipotential region. Why books conclude ...
5
votes
3answers
20k views

In electrostatics, why the electric field inside a conductor is zero?

In electromagnetism books, such as Griffiths or the like, when they talk about the properties of conductors in case of electrostatics they say that the electric field inside a conductor is zero. I ...
1
vote
1answer
384 views

Does the universe follow a general physical and computational principle of evolution?

Evolution is a principle in biology, whereby organisms evolve their ability to replicate and multiply in numbers over successive generations. From a computational point of view, the organisms employ a ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Is the universe finite and discrete?

Is the universe finite, both in the sense of being a closed spacetime manifold, as viewed from the macro level, but also in the sense of being fully discrete and finite in all of its intricate quantum ...
7
votes
2answers
433 views

How will the super massive black hole affect our galaxy?

I've recently learned that the general consensus is that several (if not, most) galaxies have super massive black holes in their center, in particular the Milky Way. This, at least to me, makes ...
5
votes
4answers
932 views

Why doesn't the Earth leave you as soon as you escape it?

I've always wondered, that since the Earth is moving at a very fast velocity around the Sun, why is it that when astronauts leave the Earth, the Earth doesn't immediately move away from them at ...
1
vote
1answer
204 views

Can action of the weak and strong forces be reduced to action of electromagnetic force?

It is known that electromagnetic (EM) fields action on particles is limited to the Lorentz force action. In terms of spinors and currents, the EM field: (i) rotates the Dirac current around the ...
-2
votes
3answers
2k views

Theoretically, can a black hole collapse until it gets smaller than its Schwarzschild radius?

So, the concept is this: When a supergiant star collapses, its nucleus becomes a black hole. So, what if that black hole collapses again? I don't know if it is possible, but what if it happens?
2
votes
1answer
772 views

Contact angle formula still holds for liquid liquid interface?

I have seen in http://books.google.fr/books/about/Molecular_theory_of_capillarity.html?id=_ydSF_XUVeEC&redir_esc=y that there is a formula for the contact angle with a solid wall of a liquid-gas ...
6
votes
1answer
116 views

$\pm$ (light-cone?) notation in supersymmetry

I would like to know what is exactly meant when one writes $\theta^{\pm}, \bar{\theta}^\pm, Q_{\pm},\bar{Q}_{\pm},D_{\pm},\bar{D}_{\pm}$. {..I typically encounter this notation in literature on ...
2
votes
1answer
55 views

Who has succeeded in demonstrating the Lense-Thirring effect?

Who has succeeded in demonstrating the Lense-Thirring effect? This effect is one that describes the rotational motion of the Earth from a space-time structure. This effect is the "drag" of the ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

How do I determine when this object is about to get covered in dew? I can measure the environment parameters

There is a large disk of glass sitting outside, it is pretty thick and wide. Via different sensors hooked up to a controller, I can measure the air temperature, glass temperature (on the surface), and ...
-2
votes
2answers
440 views

Angle of deflection of an atomic nucleus [closed]

when firing a proton (for example) to an atomic nucleus, from a distance $D$, the deflection angle of the proton $\alpha $ to the type of changes atomic nuclei? or always constant?
0
votes
3answers
194 views

If my acceleration is -1 ($a=-1\:\rm{m/s^2}$) and I'm standing in the infinite ($x_0=\infty \:\rm m$), could I reach the point $x=0\:\rm m$?

I'm standing in the infinite where $x_0=\infty \:\rm m$. If I have a negative acceleration, could I reach the point $x=0\:\rm m$? Would it be possible to calculate how long would take to reach the ...
7
votes
2answers
481 views

Why do we like gauge potentials so much?

Today I read articles and texts about Dirac monopoles and I have been wondering about the insistence on gauge potentials. Why do they seem (or why are they) so important to create a theory about ...
7
votes
1answer
215 views

Does measurement, quantum in particular, always increase the total entropy?

Measurement of a quantum observable (in an appropriate, old-fashioned sense) necessarily involves coupling to a system with a macroscopically large number of degrees of freedom. Entanglement with this ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

Is a charged particle at rest affected by magnetic field?

It is known that particles such as electrons and protons bear electric charge, but not a magnetic charge. When these particles are at rest, are they somehow affected by magnetic field? The similar ...
1
vote
2answers
525 views

Neutrino and electromagnetic forces

I learned from Wikipedia that neutrinos "are not affected by the electromagnetic forces". How was this identified experimentally?
6
votes
2answers
182 views

References for Radio Imaging?

I'm really intrigued by a bunch of questions like 'what do radio waves look like?' 'how much RF radiation is there in the town I live in?' 'how specifically does RF imaging work?' But I think I need ...
9
votes
2answers
543 views

_Actually_ hearing the shape of a drum

The problem of hearing the shape of a drum is well known as a mathematical problem. But what about as a problem of (1) physics and (2) human perception? Suppose you have the kind of membrane used ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

How much disolved oxygen is removed by boiling water?

Apologies if this is a chemistry question I've read that drinking water contains dissolved oxygen to the tune of $10\:\rm{ppm}$. I've also read that raising the temperature of water will remove some ...
5
votes
2answers
633 views

Is it possible to fly like a bird using semi-motorized wings?

On his website http://www.humanbirdwings.net/ the dutch engineer Jarno Smeets claims to have successfully build a set of 17 m^2 bird-like wings from material of a kite. It is claimed that it ...
8
votes
4answers
707 views

Do neutron stars reflect light?

The setup is very simple: you have a regular ($1.35$ to $2$ solar masses) evolved neutron star, and you shine plane electromagnetic waves on it with given $\lambda$. Very roughly, what shall be the ...
0
votes
1answer
277 views

Why does the d-spacing of a polymer decrease as its crystallinity increases?

I am currently investigating the annealing of a polymer (Parylene-C). In my reading I have found that when the polymer is annealed, there is a decrease in thickness of the film which results from a ...
6
votes
3answers
841 views

Does this Zeilinger group result provide experimental proof of backward-in-time causation?

Does this recent Zeilinger group delayed choice entanglement experiment imply backward-in-time influences? http://arxiv.org/abs/1203.4834 From the abstract: "This can also be viewed as “quantum ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Could there be a sort of “Molecular Destiny”?

Let's say we start with the Big Bang. Every bit of matter started from this event. Therefore, given EVERY variable (every particle, movements of particles, weights, times, etc) and an INFINITE amount ...
0
votes
2answers
4k views

Jumping in an elevator?

I've always been under the impression that jumping in an elevator wouldn't help at all, especially after reading a snippet of physics where Einstein said that free fall was identical to zero gravity. ...
4
votes
1answer
63 views

Spectrum of Free Strings

As far as I understand, both in bosonic and superstring theory one considers initially a free string propagating through D-dimensional Minkowskispace. Regardless of what quantization one uses, at the ...
3
votes
1answer
776 views

About binary stars and calculating velocity, period and radius of their orbit

I saw somewhere about being able to measure the velocity, period and radius of a binary star orbit by looking at red shift and blue shift. I understand it but can someone give me an example of ...
3
votes
1answer
254 views

What is the connection between extra dimensions in Kaluza-Klein type theories and those in string theories?

This follows to some extent from a question I asked previously about the flaws of Kaluza-Klein theories. It appears to me that Kaluza-Klein theories attach additional dimensions to spacetime that are ...
1
vote
0answers
139 views

Can a the volume flow through a positive displacement pump be reliably measured by tracking revolutions of the drive shaft? [closed]

The question refers to non-compressible fluids. I'm mostly thinking about monopumps (excentric screw pumps), but this also should apply to any type of gear pumps as well, possibly also to piston ...
7
votes
2answers
618 views

How does infrared light 'erase' phosphorescence on zinc sulfide?

I found some sheets of zinc sulfide in my basement that phosphoresce green for up to 24 hours or so after exposure to bright light in the violet range or shorter. One of the first things I tried was ...
0
votes
1answer
347 views

Calculating the launch angle of a horizontal launch (mechanics) [closed]

I need some help with the following question: A smooth spherical object (the first object) is projected horizontally from a point of vertical height H = 26.38 metres above horizontal ground with a ...
2
votes
2answers
291 views

Can a neutron star compress until it's converted to a black hole?

The Universe's densest objects are black holes. In the second place, there are neutron stars. So, if a neutron star compresses to its Schwarzschild radius, would it appear as a black hole? That black ...
7
votes
2answers
708 views

Majorana particles statistics

What is the influence of Hermitian condition ($\psi=\psi^{\dagger}$) of Majorana fermions operators in their statistical behavior? A Majorana fermion gas must obey the Fermi-Dirac statistics, or ...
1
vote
4answers
865 views

Questions on wave-particle duality

Wave-particle duality states that a particle has both wave properties and particle properties when one is not observing it. 1) What is an observer? Need it be anything living or can other particles ...
3
votes
1answer
628 views

Can we explain physical similarities between Black Scholes PDE and the Mass Balance PDE (e.g. Advection-Diffusion equation)?

Both the Black-Scholes PDE{*} and the Mass/Material Balance PDE have a similar mathematical form of the PDE which is evident from the fact that on change of variables from Black-Scholes PDE we derive ...
2
votes
3answers
5k views

Finding Lagrangian of a Spring Pendulum

I'm trying to understand Morin's example of a spring pendulum. What I don't get is his expression for $T$. I can understand the $\dot x^2$ term in the brackets. But I don't understand the $(l + ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

What are the best astronomy blogs and podcasts? [closed]

For someone who likes learning about astronomy what are the blogs and/or podcasts that I should be following?
2
votes
2answers
6k views

Best physics olympiad resources [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Book recommendations I am looking for good book recommendations at the level of high-school physics. I am having in mind to find out as to what are the typical books ...
2
votes
2answers
238 views

Gauge invariant scalar potentials

If $\Phi$ is a multi-component scalar field which is transforming in some representation of a gauge group say $G$ then how general a proof can one give to argue that the potential can only be a ...

15 30 50 per page