Astronomy

What is Light?

Photons are simultaneously infinite and zero-dimensional Photons have no size. However they are also simultaneously waves that extend arbitrarily, possibly infinitely, across the entire universe. A photon is an elementary particle, the quantum of light and all other forms of electromagnetic radiation. It is the force carrier for the electromagnetic… Read More »What is Light?

painting Belshazzar's Feast by Rembrandt (1635), slightly altered by the author. The disembodied hand on the wall writes the fine structure constant rather than Hebrew letters in this version.

Why 137?

“Why 137?” was the question Nobel Prize winning physicist Wolfgang Pauli (1900-1958) was preoccupied with throughout his life. You see the fine structure constant, a dimensionless fundamental constant of physics, has a value nearly equal to 1/137. Here’s an overview: In his Nobel lecture delivered in Stockholm on 13 December… Read More »Why 137?

Learning from CERN

CERN’s Large Hadron Collider (LHC) is the largest, most complex and most expensive machine ever built on this planet. Over 10,000 scientists and engineers from over 100 countries collaborated on its design and construction. The purpose of the machine is essentially to study the interrelation between the physics of the… Read More »Learning from CERN