The Discovery of Subatomic Particles

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This commentary on the discovery of the atom's constituents provides an historical account of key events in the physics of the twentieth century that led to the discoveries of the electron, proton and neutron. Steven Weinberg introduces the fundamentals of classical physics that played crucial roles in these discoveries. Connections are shown throughout the book between the historic discoveries of subatomic particles and contemporary research at the frontiers of physics, including the most current discoveries of ...

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Overview

This commentary on the discovery of the atom's constituents provides an historical account of key events in the physics of the twentieth century that led to the discoveries of the electron, proton and neutron. Steven Weinberg introduces the fundamentals of classical physics that played crucial roles in these discoveries. Connections are shown throughout the book between the historic discoveries of subatomic particles and contemporary research at the frontiers of physics, including the most current discoveries of new elementary particles. Steven Weinberg was Higgins Professor of Physics at Harvard before moving to The University of Texas at Austin, where he founded its Theory Group. At Texas he holds the Josey Regental Chair of Science and is a member of the Physics and Astronomy Departments. His research has spanned a broad range of topics in quantum field theory, elementary particle physics, and cosmology, and has been honored with numerous awards, including the Nobel Prize in Physics, the National Medal of Science, the Heinemann Prize in Mathematical Physics, the Cresson Medal of the Franklin Institute, the Madison Medal of Princeton University, and the Oppenheimer Prize. In addition to the well-known treatise, Gravitation and Cosmololgy, he has written several books for general readers, including the prize-winning The First Three Minutes (now translated into 22 foreign languages), and most recently Dreams of a Final Theory (Pantheon Books, 1993). He has also written a textbook The Quantum Theory of Fields, Vol.I, Vol. II, and Vol. III (Cambridge).

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Reprint of the 1983 edition with a new introduction by Weinberg (physics, U. of Texas). Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

Meet the Author

Steven Weinberg is Josey Regental Professor of Science at the University of Texas. His research has been honored with numerous prizes and awards, including in 1979 the Nobel Prize in Physics and in 1991 the National Medal of Science, as well as the Heinemann Prize in Mathematical Physics and the Madison Medal of Princeton University. He has been elected to the US National Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society of Great Britain, the American Philosophical Society, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Preface to Revised Edition
1 A World of Particles 1
2 The Discovery of the Electron 9
3 The Atomic Scale 67
4 The Nucleus 94
5 More Particles 145
App. A Newton's Second Law of Motion 160
App. B Electric and Magnetic Deflection of Cathode Rays 161
App. C Electric Fields and Field Lines 163
App. D Work and Kinetic Energy 166
App. E Energy Conversation in Cathode-Ray Experiments 168
App. F Gas Properties and Boltzmann's Constant 169
App. G Millikan's Oil-Drop Experiment 174
App. H Radioactive Decay 178
App. I Potential Energy in the Atom 182
App. J Rutherford Scattering 184
App. K Momentum Conservation and Particle Collisions 188
Tables 192
Notes for Further Reading 195
Sources of Illustrations 197
Index 199
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