There is no temperature below absolute zero, and, in fact, zero itself is impossible to reach. The quest to reach it has lured scientists for several centuries revealing interesting and unexpected phenomena along the way. Atoms move more slowly at low temperatures, butmatter at barely above absolute zero is not immobile or even necessarily frozen. Among the most peculiar of matter's strange behaviours is superconductivity - simply described as electric current without resistance - discovered in 1911. With the 1986 discovery that, contrary to previous expectations, superconductivity was possible at temperatures well above absolute zero, research into practical applications has flourished. Superconductivity has turned out to be a fruitful area for developments in condensed matter physics, which have proved applicable in particle physics and cosmology as well. "The Cold Wars" tells the history of superconductivity, providing perspective on the development of the field and its relationship with the rest of physics and the history of our time. The authors provide a rare look at the scientists and their research, mostly little known beyond a small coterie of specialists. Superconductivity provides an excellent example of the evolutionh of physics in the 20th century: the science itself, its epistemological foundations, and its social context.
Publisher: Rutgers University Press
Weight: 581 g
Dimensions: 230 x 152 x 23 mm
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