Hydrogen: the essential element

Book Cover
Average Rating
Publisher:
Harvard University Press,
Pub. Date:
2002.
Language:
English
Description

Seduced by simplicity, physicists find themselves endlessly fascinated by hydrogen, the simplest of atoms. Hydrogen has shocked, it has surprised, it has embarrassed, it has humbled--and again and again it has guided physicists to the edge of new vistas where the promise of basic understanding and momentous insights beckoned. The allure of hydrogen, crucial to life and critical to scientific discovery, is at the center of this book, which tells a story that begins with the big bang and continues to unfold today.

In this biography of hydrogen, John Rigden shows how this singular atom, the most abundant in the universe, has helped unify our understanding of the material world from the smallest scale, the elementary particles, to the largest, the universe itself. It is a tale of startling discoveries and dazzling practical benefits spanning more than one hundred years--from the first attempt to identify the basic building block of atoms in the mid-nineteenth century to the discovery of the Bose-Einstein condensate only a few years ago. With Rigden as an expert and engaging guide, we see how hydrogen captured the imagination of many great scientists--such as Heisenberg, Pauli, Schrödinger, Dirac, and Rabi--and how their theories and experiments with this simple atom led to such complex technical innovations as magnetic resonance imaging, the maser clock, and global positioning systems. Along the way, we witness the transformation of science from an endeavor of inspired individuals to a monumental enterprise often requiring the cooperation of hundreds of scientists around the world.

Still, any biography of hydrogen has to end with a question: What new surprises await us?

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ISBN:
9780674007383
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID 1819f08e-0534-dd3a-d129-04f08c887f30
full_title hydrogen the essential element
author rigden john s
grouping_category book
lastUpdate 2017-12-15 06:20:54AM

Solr Details

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author Rigden, John S.
author_display Rigden, John S
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itype_arlington Hardback
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literary_form Non Fiction
literary_form_full Non Fiction
local_callnumber_arlington 546 RIGDE
owning_library_arlington Arlington Public Library, Aurora Hills, Central, Cherrydale, Columbia Pike, Connection Crystal City, Detention Center, Glencarlyn, Local History, Plaza, Shirlington, Westover
owning_location_arlington Central
primary_isbn 9780674007383
publishDate 2002
record_details ils:.b1315316x|Book|Books||English|Harvard University Press,|2002.|vii, 280 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.
recordtype grouped_work
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subject_facet Hydrogen, Science -- Methodology
title_display Hydrogen : the essential element
title_full Hydrogen : the essential element / John S. Rigden
title_short Hydrogen :
title_sub the essential element