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We see how much the interpretation of a measurement in physics depends on the model being used. Rutherford would nevertheless use helium nuclei, the “alpha” particles emitted by certain nuclear reactions, to demonstrate that the nucleus of an atom is much smaller than the atoms themselves. pdf WBG Soft Proof 4/21/08 2:51:46 PM Pg 33 I AM RADIOACTIVE reactions, was a good one. 5 billion years. We were thus approaching the truth which has today been established. One day in 1994, while reading Jean Jacques’s Confessions of an Ordinary Chemist, I came across a magnificent quote from Victor Hugo’s William Shakespeare.

Another hypothesis has been proposed, according to which the Earth, rotating rapidly on its axis, lost some of its surface after elongating. It doesn’t seem, however, that the rotational speed of the Moon is compatible with this hypothesis. It has also been proposed that the Earth might have captured a foreign object which was passing by and kept it in orbit; but then, if this object was already part of the same solar system, why didn’t it contain the same kind of metallic core as the Earth? Now, in our day of computers and complex calculations, the idea proposed by Hartmann and Davis in 1975 has apparently been accepted: the Moon is a result of a titanic collision between the newly formed Earth and an object the size of Mars (around 6,800 km in diameter).

Pdf WBG Soft Proof 4/21/08 2:51:48 PM Pg 44 CHAPTER 4 –1___ 0___ +1___ The magazine Science had thus taken an image which was widespread among physicists in order to communicate, in a more tangible way, what “Einstein-Bose condensation” might be. So what is it about that blue brigade, then, that makes me so indignant, even today? And can I manage to describe and explain this “condensation” invented by Einstein without equations? Is it possible to explain in plain English the nature of a discovery made in the arena of quantum physics—a branch of physics renowned for being so completely removed from our daily experience?

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Physics Reports vol.210


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