Physics

Continual Fascination: Oscillatory Cosmological Models after Einstein

Kragh discussed the theory of an “oscillating universe” in his lecture. This idea is popular as it avoids the problem of “absolute creation”. However, this theory is difficult to combine with thermodynamics and the law of increasing entropy. Kragh discussed a number of new theories on cyclic models of the universe.

The Rise and Fall of the Fifth Force

Franklin discusses the idea of a fifth fundamental force of nature. CP violations, for example in the K-meson decay, could suggest a modification of the gravitational force. He discussed the repeat of a famous experiment by Fishbach, first performed by Eötvös, that could determine whether such as force exists. However, the results obtained were in …

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From the Schwarzschild Singularity to the Black Hole Horizon

This lecture by Eisenstaedt considers the interpretations of the Schwarzschild field solution for black holes. This recording is of quite bad quality. Combined with the absence of supporting material, it is very difficult to follow the lecture without prior knowledge.

General Relativity from Hilbert’s perspective

This lecture by Sauer covers the work done by Hilbert, in interaction with Einstein around 1915. Around this time, Einstein was working on a gravitational field equation. Hilbert was inspired by this after a visit by Einstein, and developed his well-known axioms and a dynamic field theory, further inspired by work done by Mie.

Why do rods contract? Extending Bell’s “Lorentzian Pedagogy” into General Relativity

Brown covers the topic of Lorentz contraction. This follows from the postulates of relativity, but is not explained by it. Earlier papers by Fitz-Gerald and Lorentz discuss a shape deformation in the context of a spherical collection of charges that moves, and deforms. Time dilation also follows from these considerations, however, Einstein added to this …

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How did Minkowski discover spacetime?

Walter’s lecture is about the discovery of the description of spacetime by Minkowksi. He initially understood the geometry of relativity in terms of the hyperbolic geometry of velocity vectors, not in terms of worldlines and proper time. A correct definition of simultaneity and proper time is vital for this discovery. This idea, that Euclidean geometry …

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Unified Field Theory up to the 1960s: its development and the interaction between research groups

Goenner’s lecture on geometry and unified field theories focuses on Einstein’s approach to unify gravity with electromagnetism. Einstein hypothesized that both forces were described by one metric, that can be split into a symmetric and antisymmetric part. Studying the parallel transport of a vector leads to constraints on the metric that are important in these …

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