Out of the Crystal Maze: Chapters from The History of Solid by Lillian Hoddeson, Ernst Braun, Jurgen Teichmann, Spencer

By Lillian Hoddeson, Ernst Braun, Jurgen Teichmann, Spencer Weart

This landmark paintings chronicles the foundation and evolution of stable country physics, which grew to adulthood among 1920 and 1960. The publication examines the early roots of the sector in business, medical and inventive efforts and lines them throughout the Fifties, whilst many physicists all over the world famous themselves as participants of a special subfield of physics examine established on solids. The e-book opens with an account of clinical and social advancements that preceded the invention of quantum mechanics, together with the discovery of recent experimental skill for learning solids and the institution of the 1st commercial laboratories. The authors set the degree for the trendy period by means of detailing the formula of the quantum box thought of solids. The middle of the e-book examines six significant subject matters: the band concept of solids; the phenomenology of imperfect crystals; the puzzle of the plastic homes of solids, solved through the invention of dislocations; magnetism; semiconductor physics; and collective phenomena, the context during which outdated puzzles akin to superconductivity and superfluidity have been ultimately solved. All readers attracted to the heritage of technology will locate this soaking up quantity an important source for figuring out the emergence of up to date physics.

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70 Crystallographers before Voigt had connected physical properties with crystal structure in their books, yet he was the first to bring all the Crystallographers' the- The Roots of Solid-State Physics Before Quantum Mechanics 19 ories about structure together in a physics textbook. "71 He described in detail the effects of heat, electricity, magnetism, and pressure, using experimental results including error analysis, and he tried to provide a theoretical explanation based strictly on classical mechanical and thermodynamic laws.

In fact, the central message of his textbook was a specific method of looking at things that could scarcely have been more abstract and ideal. This method seems so inevitable today that it is hard to imagine that physics ever lacked it, but it arose only late in the nineteenth century out of crystal studies, and is perhaps the greatest contribution such studies have made to scientific thought—analysis through symmetry. 78 The work Hauy published in 1801 and 1802, summing up his previous publications on the theory of structure, marked the point where crystallography split from mineralogy to become a science of its own.

The PTR's physical-scientific department consisted of three groups: thermal, electrical, and optical. In the first years, the main work of the thermal group was to improve thermometers. For example, it investigated the thermal expansion of var- 14 Out of the Crystal Maze ious types of glass, manufactured chiefly by Zeiss and Schott. 45 Meanwhile, the electrical group looked for ways to determine more precisely the values of the fundamental electrical units. It also carried out magnetic measurements of iron and steel on commission for the German navy.

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