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If we were to hold a single atom in our hand, would it feel solid? In addition, do all the matter that we feel solid actually a wave of probability? I'm not a physicist anyway.

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closed as off-topic by Carl Witthoft, ACuriousMind, Kyle Kanos, Jim, Brandon Enright Nov 3 '14 at 16:16

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  • $\begingroup$ This borders on the metaphilosophical $\endgroup$ – Carl Witthoft Nov 3 '14 at 12:26
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    $\begingroup$ This question appears to be off-topic because it is about philosophical views of reality. $\endgroup$ – Carl Witthoft Nov 3 '14 at 12:27
  • $\begingroup$ Similar to physics.stackexchange.com/questions/141390/… $\endgroup$ – dmckee Nov 3 '14 at 14:53
  • $\begingroup$ This question appears to be off-topic because it is based on the faulty premise that you can feel a single atom. $\endgroup$ – Brandon Enright Nov 3 '14 at 16:16
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We hold zillions of atoms in our hand, just air has 10^23 molecules per mole. One atom is insignificant for our macroscopic senses which deal with ensembles of atoms and molecules.

In addition, do all the matter that we feel solid actually a wave of probability? I'm not a physicist anyway.

Probability waves are relevant in very small dimensions, atomic dimensions less than a nanometer, i.e. 10^-9 meters. When the many body problem becomes ensembles of atoms building up macroscopic matter, quantum mechanical considerations give solutions the same with classical physics. It is called decoherence

It justifies the framework and intuition of classical physics as an acceptable approximation: decoherence is the mechanism by which the classical limit emerges from a quantum starting point and it determines the location of the quantum-classical boundary.

Holding an atom in a magnetic trap in vacuum has a probability distribution in space for where the atom is within the experiment, commensurate with its dimensions. Holding an apple in your hand has two values : either one is holding it, or one is not.

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As far as we know, everything is compressible right down and into a Black Hole. Totally rigid materials would violate Special Relativity because pushing on one end would move the other instantaneously ie faster than light. So, everything is squishy if you hold it hard enough.

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