Physics

Pensiero per il Prof. Giaquinta

“(…) sopra un cielo azzurro-nero
una pioggia di stelle cadenti
sempre più fitta parabolicamente
fino a lasciare vuoto il firmamento;
(…) oppure: un suono forte e acuto
che a poco a poco invade tutto,
alberi, case, strade e l’aria
colti all’unisono da una vibrazione
che poi adagio si va spegnendo…”

J. Rodolfo Wilcock

In questo momento potrei ricorrere a tantissimi luoghi comuni per descrivere i pensieri che, rapidi, si rincorrono nella mia mente: da “I geni sono sempre incompresi” a “Se ne vanno sempre i migliori”.
Si rincorrono i pensieri nella mia mente, sino a sprofondare in un vuoto abissale, dove anche le parole non trovano spazio, né tempo. In ognuno di noi esiste, infatti, uno spazio vuoto, destinato ad essere colmato dalle sofferenze umane, non appena i silenzi si tramutano in grida atone e le onde del suono si infrangono su fosse triangolari senza essere ascoltate. Scomposte, invece, le onde delle emozioni si vanno lentamente a ricomporre in una sola (onda), polarizzata, differentemente da quelle acustiche. Dentro di noi esiste un “luogo” in cui lo sguardo è rivolto al buio, un “luogo” in cui i raggi, proni o supini, di un sole cieco senza splendore convergono in fondo al petto. Dentro di noi, esiste uno spazio, all’interno del quale le emozioni si propagano con velocità diverse, come se subissero l’influenza di quel vento d’etere, mai rilevato nell’esperimento di Michelson-Morley, che passa sperduto al ‘Credo’, disteso sulle mani intrecciate in preghiera.
Ecco che, di nuovo, arrivo nell’ombra che dimentica il colore degli occhi – assorbito negli anni – e la mia voce si avvolge su se stessa, senza dire una parola. E’ così che la simmetria nascosta, che inclina il cuore, si rompe spontaneamente in ognuno di noi: e nulla si conserva, ad eccezione dei ricordi strappati dal corpo, che, come gli occhi, “si alzano al cielo con lacrime” (cit. Wilcock).

(Pensiero per il Prof. G. Giaquinta)
Oggi, con le lacrime agli occhi, desidero esprimere la mia gratitudine verso questo incredibile ed eccezionale Professore, ringraziandolo per avermi dato la possibilità di conoscerlo e di confrontarmi con lui; e, ancora, desidero ringraziarlo per avermi concesso il privilegio – unico! – di riportarlo, dopo tantissimi anni, al Dipartimento di Fisica di Catania, in qualità di mio correlatore (alla faccia di chi gli ha voluto male per invidia – o chissà per cos’altro!)

Higgs boson is found!

Scientists working with the Large Hadron Collider at Cern are expected to announce to the world that they have finally found the “God particle”, or Higgs boson ( it was predicted by theory in the early 1960s).

They have captured the ‘elusive’ particle that gives matter mass and holds the universe together. As the announcement was made, the scientists present broke into applause.

This is the sort of thing that makes me cry”, said Higgs physicist.

Professor Higgs, currently at the University of Edinburgh, welcomed the Cern results, telling: “I never expected this to happen in my lifetime and shall be asking my family to put some champagne in the fridge.
The Higgs Boson particle has a mass that’s around 130 times that of a proton, in the 125-6 GeV mass range.
“We observe in our data clear signs of a new particle, at the level of 5 sigma, in the mass region around 126 GeV,” said Fabiola Gianotti. The accuracy from the CMS experiment was 4.9 sigma.

The Nobel Prize in Physics 2013 was awarded jointly to François Englert and Peter W. Higgs “for the theoretical discovery of a mechanism that contributes to our understanding of the origin of mass of subatomic particles, and which recently was confirmed through the discovery of the predicted fundamental particle, by the ATLAS and CMS experiments at CERN’s Large Hadron Collider”.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/large-hadron-collider/9374758/Higgs-boson-scientists-99.999-sure-God-Particle-has-been-found.html

Physics meets Biology

A physicist, biologist and a chemist were going to the ocean for the first time. The physicist saw the ocean and was fascinated by the waves. He said he wanted to do some research on the fluid dynamics of the waves and walked into the ocean. Obviously he was drowned and never returned. The biologist said he wanted to do research on the flora and fauna inside the ocean and walked inside the ocean. He too, never returned. The chemist waited for a long time and afterwards, wrote the observation, “The physicist and the biologist are soluble in ocean water”.

The fields of biology and physics have long been regarded as being on nearly opposite sides of the scientific field. Biology has been revolutionized by the discoveries of natural selection, DNA and cellular chemistry. Physicists study matter in its nearly unlimited variety of condensed states from liquids to crystalline solids (class of solids that have regular or nearly regular crystalline

structures), from chemically-synthesized nanostructures ( objects that have a physical dimension smaller than 100 nanometers) to superconductors ( materials that have no resistance to the flow of electricity) , from carbon nanotubes to liquid crystals… and so on!

Microscopic observation of the trapped clouds of bosonic and fermionic atoms have led to developments and progress in these fields.

Physics

All fundamental particles in nature can be divided into one of two categories: Fermions or Bosons.

Fermions half-integral spin only one per state Examples:
electrons, protons, neutrons, quarks, neutrinos
Bosons integral spin Many can occupy the same state Examples:
photons, 4He atoms, gluons

Bosons have intrinsic angular momenta in integral units of \frac{h}{2\pi}. Many bosons can occupy a single quantum state.  Any object which is comprised of an even number of fermions is a boson, while any particle which is comprised of an odd number of fermions is a fermion. Only one fermion can exist in a given quantum state. This is known as the Pauli exclusion principle.
 
According to Pauli’s exclusion principle: “In an atom no two electrons can have the same set of four quantum numbers.”
Pauli’s exclusion principle can also be stated as: “An orbital can not accomodate more than two electrons i.e. maximum number of electrons that an orbital can accomodate is two.”

Joke:
A Higgs-Boson walks into a bar. The bartender says “You know, there were some guys looking for you.”