Although we may look back on Einstein as an oddball with a zany haircut who stuck out his tongue and rode a bike, he was a serious man who thought about politics as well as physics. Living in Germany during World War I, he was an outspoken pacifist who organized scientists against militarism. “Einstein thought we needed to think across national borders and tried to start a book project to include contributions from people from neutral and enemy countries,” Staley notes. “Most of his colleagues said it was a great idea, but would be counterproductive. They refused to participate, so it did not happen.”
This quote illustrates the fundamental philosophy of Albert Einstein and provides an insight into the mind of a theoretical physicist and a maverick that revolutionized physics in the early Twentieth Century....
Nobel Prize-winning physicist Albert Einstein finds beauty in life's mysteries, and says the fate of mankind depends on individuals choosing public service over private gain.
That year, 1905, remains one of the most significant in the history of . Before Einstein, entities such as and space and and were separate. But by bringing these then seemingly unrelated elements together, first in the concept of and immediately thereafter in the equation E = mc2, Einstein completed his theory of special relativity. Special relativity is perhaps one of the least intuitive theories ever conceived in the history of science, yet it is central to physics.
In 1905, the same year he finished his Ph.D. thesis, Einstein published several amazing insights, including papers on Brownian motion and the photoelectric effect (the latter won Einstein his sole ). One of those papers proposed a theory of “special relativity” that said that the speed of light is fixed and independent of the observer’s motion. The 1887 convinced Einstein that there was no ether (the supposed physical background that allowed light to move), and that the laws of physics were the same in reference frames moving with a constant velocity relative to each other.
That thought was the first step. It took seven and more years for Einstein to complete this work in 1915. Its first phase was devoted to directly from Einstein's "happiest thought." In it, acceleration produced a special case of a relativistic gravitational field. Einstein now turned to the task of cataloguing the properties of this special case and generalizing them to arrive at a more general theory. In the special case, clocks are slowed and light is deflected by the gravitational field, which is proportional to the a variable speed of light. Those properties, Einstein supposed, hold in all static gravitational fields and he could arrive at the description of these fields merely by slightly generalizing the ways that the speed of light could vary with position in space.
The flash came in Einstein's first step. In 1907, while still a patent clerk, he was pondering how one might produce a relativistic theory of gravity and he was not having much success. Then he was struck by the fact that an observer in free fall no longer feels his own weight. He then hit upon what he called " of my life." One can produce gravity in gravity free space merely by reversing the process. Acceleration creates a gravitational field. This is his "principle of equivalence."
He started working as a Patent Officer in June, 1902 and received an annual salary of 3500 francs.
Albert Einstein's inventions and his theories proved to be of great help to scientists of 20th century.
These constructions occupied Einstein's efforts in gravitation theory up to mid 1912. In the year that followed, Einstein made the transition to a spacetime theory in which gravitation is related to the its geometry.
Unlike the case of special relativity, we have been able to reconstruct in some detail the steps and missteps of this decisive advance. We have a series of publications documenting the various stages of the developing theory and even his calculations, which I have spent a great deal of time in reconstructing. Einstein's explorations went quickly and slowly, straight and meandering. At times they became almost recipe-like. Einstein laid out the requirements his final equations must meet and then systematically searched for equations that satisfied them.
We see this same mix of flash of insight and systematic construction in the case of Einstein's greatest discovery, the general theory of relativity. This is the theory that tells us that gravity is just a of spacetime. It tells us that the real geometry of space is not the one Euclid described millennia ago and opens the door for later researchers to posit black holes and other extraordinary pathologies of space and time.
Quantum mechanics says that atoms can exist in certain energy states, but not in between. A group of atoms occupies numerous energy states, washing out the quantum-mechanical effects, but in a Bose-Einstein condensate, Wieman said, “You have a bunch of atoms in a single quantum state, obeying the laws of quantum mechanics as a whole. Traditionally, to see a quantum state, you had to look inside a single atom. Now we can look at millions of atoms.”
Although some of the previous proofs of general relativity could conceivably be explained with alternate theories, Shiu says, “The frame-dragging detected in Gravity Probe B provides yet another independent test that any alternative to Einstein’s general relativity would have to meet.”