Search of Ultimate Building Blocks

Search of Ultimate Building Blocks

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't Hooft
Cambridge University Press, 1/12/2008
EAN 9780521578837, ISBN10: 0521578833

Paperback, 208 pages, 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.3 cm
Language: English

This is a first-hand account of one of the most creative and exciting periods of discovery in the history of physics. From 1960 until 1990 theoreticians and experimentalists worked together to probe deeper and deeper into the basic structure of reality, moving closer and closer to an understanding of the ultimate building blocks from which everything in the Universe is made. Gerard 't Hooft was closely involved in many of the advances in the development of the subject. In this book he gives a personal account of the process by which physicists came to understand the structure of matter, and to speculate on possible directions in which the subject may evolve in the future. This fascinating personal account of the last thirty years in one of the most dramatic areas in twentieth century physics will be of interest to professional physicists and physics students, as well as the educated general reader with an interest in one of the most exciting scientific detective stories ever.

An apology
1. The beginning of the journey to the small
cutting paper
2. To molecules and atoms
3. The magic mystery of the quanta
4. Dazzling velocities
5. The elementary particle zoo before 1970
6. Life and death
7. The crazy kaons
8. The invisible quarks
9. Fields or bootstraps?
10. The Yang-Mills bonanza
11. Superconducting empty space
the Higgs-Kibble machine
12. Models
13. Colouring in the strong forces
14. The magnetic monopole
15. Gypsy
16. The brilliance of the standard model
17. Anomalies
18. Deceptive perfection
19. Weighing neutrinos
20. The great desert
21. Technicolor
22. Grand unification
23. Supergravity
24. Eleven dimensional space-time
25. Attaching the super string
26. Into the black hole
27. Theories that do not yet exist …
28. Dominance of the rule of the smallest.

'One of the most difficult hurdles to be overcome in explaining particle physics to the layperson is to find analogies by which difficult abstract concepts and advanced mathematics can be communicated simply and faithfully. It is just one of the hurdles over which Gerard 't Hooft leaps, apparently effortlessly, in this rattling good read ... an entertaining mix of high theory and solid experimental facts, laced with his individual brand of dry and ingenuous humour ... The style of this book is highly engaging and is simply and succinctly written.' John Ellis, Physics World