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Manjit Kumar



Shortlisted for the BBC Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction 2009


ISBN: 9789380143101

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Quantum theory is weird. As Niels Bohr said, if you weren't shocked by quantum theory, you didn't really understand it. For most people, quantum theory is a byword for mysterious, impenetrable science. And yet for many years it was equally baffling for scientists themselves. In this tour de force of science history, Manjit Kumar gives a dramatic and superbly-written account of this fundamental scientific revolution. But his centrepiece is the conflict between Einstein and Bohr over the nature of reality and the soul of science. A close look at the golden age of physics, the brilliant young minds at its centre-and how an idea ignited the greatest intellectual debate of the twentieth century

He describes Einstein, Bohr and the "Great Debate about the Nature of Reality" that played out over a number of years, particularly at the Fifth Solvay International Conference on electrons and photons in 1927, where the physicists met to discuss the then newly formulated quantum theory. It narrates the life of some eminent physicists and their work and also gives a view of the environment of science at that time. It tells the life stories of Bohr, Einstein, Planck, Rutherford, Schr?dinger, and others.


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