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  • The OFFICIAL IntenseMuscle Physics Q&A Thread

    I thought it would be fun to start a thread to explain or elucidate some questions people might have about physics. I will start by answering a couple of common questions, then open up the floor for anything people might want to know. Keep in mind I do not YET have a doctorate in physics, but I do have some game. I have also invited TommyKav to answer questions as well, as he also has mucho physics knowledge. Also if we're lucky, Justin Harris will show up to the party as well.

    Q: What is physics?
    A:
    Simply put, physics is the study of matter, energy, and how they interact. Every natural science (biology, chemistry, geology, etc.) is based on universal laws and principles. These laws and principles come from physics. A good example of this is the law of conservation of energy. (In a closed system, energy is neither created nor destroyed.) This law has important applications in all the "hard" sciences, but it is ultimately derived from physical principles that are explained by physics.

    Q: What are your qualifications to answer these questions?
    A:
    I have been studying physics in some form or another for 10 years. I have a bachelor's degree in physics and mathematics, and I am now in graduate school at Texas A&M University. I have been in grad school for 5.5 years now, and I will be defending my dissertation in Spring 2016. My field of study is theoretical physics, specifically high-energy nuclear physics.

    Q: Why should I care about physics?
    A:
    Well, you don’t have to. However, it is currently the best way that humans have of explaining and understanding the universe and how it works. Physics tell us how the sun shines, tells us why the planets orbit the sun, and even tells us (kind of) why matter has mass.

    Now, who's first?
    Last edited by Sammich; 01-06-2016, 02:30 PM.
    Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
    kind of a douche

  • #2
    nice, sounds like a new place for me to ask homework questions

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    • #3
      so Nate, why does matter have mass
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      • #4
        Originally posted by bhman6 View Post
        so Nate, why does matter have mass
        matter is believed to have mass due to an as yet undescovered boson. it exists in theory and the theory itself is pretty sound.

        Remember a few months ago with all the talk of the HADRON collider and finding the GOD particle? thats exactly what they are looking for, The HiGGS BOSON.

        By definition the Higgs Boson is the partcle responsible for giving all matter mass. What the hadron collider is going to attempt to do is smash apart sub atomic particles to attempt to catch a glimpse of one of these boson's.

        all matter can be broken down into energy and energy turned into matter. einstein proved this with E=MC^2. But something in matter gives it mass that isnt present in energy. hope that helps.
        "Your not gonna find a bang maid cause theres no such thing."
        "I already did...your mom....good bye.".

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        • #5
          Originally posted by TommyKav View Post
          matter is believed to have mass due to an as yet undescovered boson. it exists in theory and the theory itself is pretty sound.

          Remember a few months ago with all the talk of the HADRON collider and finding the GOD particle? thats exactly what they are looking for, The HiGGS BOSON.

          By definition the Higgs Boson is the partcle responsible for giving all matter mass. What the hadron collider is going to attempt to do is smash apart sub atomic particles to attempt to catch a glimpse of one of these boson's.

          all matter can be broken down into energy and energy turned into matter. einstein proved this with E=MC^2. But something in matter gives it mass that isnt present in energy. hope that helps.

          From my understanding, they are also attempting to identify the gravitron as well.

          I'm ignorant on so many levels when it comes to physics, but it's absolutely interesting. The one science that really delves into the possible coalition between the physical and spiritual. This will be a thread I check into often.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by dropshot001 View Post
            nice, sounds like a new place for me to ask homework questions
            Not exactly what I was going for, but I'll take it.
            Originally posted by bhman6 View Post
            so Nate, why does matter have mass
            This is one of the foremost questions in modern theoretical physics. I will attempt to explain it as best I can, but I do not currently have the EXTREME mathematical background necessary to completely understand it. The current thinking is this:

            All throughout space there exist different fields. Some of these are very familiar, like the electromagnetic field and the gravitational field. For every particle, there exists a field for it. There is theorized to exist a field called the Higgs field. As a particle goes along, minding its own business it interacts with different fields. The theory is that the particles that we know that have mass (like the electron and the proton) GET their mass by interacting with the Higgs field. The particles that DO NOT have mass (like the photon) DO NOT interact with this Higgs field.

            But why would some particles interact with the Higgs field and some would not? The current thinking is that VERY early in the universe the different fields "broke." The fields that "broke" are the ones that now have mass. I use the term "broke" to represent a very abstract mathematical concept called "spontaneous symmetry breaking." I am hoping that as I learn more about this, I will be able to explain it more clearly to the layperson.

            Tommy mentioned the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The LHC is a HUUUUUUUUUUGE particle collider that has been built in Switzerland. It speeds up subatomic particles until they are travelling at almost the speed of light and smashes them into each other. If the LHC is successful and if the theories are correct, then in these collisions we should be able to detect the particle associated with the Higgs field, which is called the Higgs boson. (A boson is a subatomic particle that represents a force, like the photon [electromagnetic force] or the hypothetical graviton [gravitational force].)
            Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
            kind of a douche

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Archaeopteryx lithographica View Post
              Not exactly what I was going for, but I'll take it.
              guess i will improve on my "theory" questions though

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              • #8
                Originally posted by dropshot001 View Post
                guess i will improve on my "theory" questions though
                Nah, man, go for it. It's all about helping people learn and understand.
                Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
                kind of a douche

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Pheedno View Post
                  From my understanding, they are also attempting to identify the gravitron as well.

                  I'm ignorant on so many levels when it comes to physics, but it's absolutely interesting. The one science that really delves into the possible coalition between the physical and spiritual. This will be a thread I check into often.
                  Unfortunately, the LHC will not be able to detect gravitons. Gravity is so phenomenally weak compared to the other forces at play in the LHC (electromagnetic, weak nuclear, and strong nuclear forces) that it will be irrelevant in the particle collisions that will be taking place.

                  If you are interested in the intersection of spirituality and physics, I highly suggest the book The Tao of Physics by Fritjof Capra. It was written in 1975 so some of the physics is outdated, but it is still an extremely interesting and thought-provoking book. Come to think of it, I need to read it again, too.
                  Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
                  kind of a douche

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                  • #10
                    im at work now but ill attempt later to explain one theory of gravity as it pertains to gravity "leaking" into our brane (almost anagalous to universe) from another brane.
                    "Your not gonna find a bang maid cause theres no such thing."
                    "I already did...your mom....good bye.".

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by dropshot001 View Post
                      nice, sounds like a new place for me to ask homework questions
                      I really wish this thread was up last semester...
                      21 yrs. old
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                      • #12
                        In classical mechanics, relativity, and even most of quantum physics gravity is uniquely and extremely weaker than the other 3 forces. if gravity was as strong as the other 3 it would be impossible for you to ever jump. gravity only seems so strong because on earth(or any other large object) were dealing with great quantities of it. strangely enough when there is enough gravity present it has the most fantactic and strange effects out of all the other forces. it can change the shape of space.


                        one theory suggests that gravity is caused by the presence of matter. this is pretty evident. planets, stars, and galaxies have massive gravitation fields. so this beggs the question why is gravity found only in the presence of large amounts of matter and not out in empty space? there is verry small amounts of gravity in empty space but for this discussion this is neglegible. the attractive force of gravity is due to the way gravity changes the shape of space around massive objects. think about getting into a bath tub. when you get in the water has to get out of your way so it rises. this is kind of what large objects do to space. space gets out of the way and warps and twists and you get gravity. but why? and why does it not do this on the quantum scale?

                        it all goes back to those fields the artist formerly known as sammich was talking about. all particles interract with gravity, even light(photons). light will take a curved path in the presence of gravity. thinking of light purely as a particle is extremely flawed, infact most people have a distorted view on its particle wave duality. however that is a topic for another discussion. so lets get to how gravity happened.

                        to do this we need to go back before the Big Bang. WHAT?!? yup BEFORE the big bang. But Tom, you say, All math breaks down when you extrapulate the equations back to the singularity! how are we going back before the big bang? well since we live on one Brane in a Multy brane universe something existed somewhere else before our universe. GIANT BRAINS (insert cheesy horror movie from the 50's music here). 2 of these brane's colided but not like clapping your hands together more like of you could turn 2 bodies of water on their side and clap the moving and wavy surfaces together. there was a giant explosion(read expansion) when these 2 branes colided and our universe was formed. it was due to the ripple effect caused by the surfaces of the branes not being flat when they colided that our universe is an unordered mess. meaning that fields Broke as * (the new symbol for the artist formerly known as sammich....kind of like prince ya know) so properly explained. not only did the higgs field become so picky about what it wants to interact with but the gravitational field kind of turned into the same type of snob. funny thing though, the higgs field and the gravitational field kind of like each other. they work pretty well together. it seems that everything that likes to interact with the higgs field and make mass also in larger quantities likes to work with gravity as well. so in each particle that helps propegate gravity there must be a graviton, or simply a particle that interacts with the gravitational field. thing is the LHC wont help us find this because of the first problem. gravity only likes large quantities. on a quantum scale the interaction of gravity cant, by modern standards be measured.......more later.
                        "Your not gonna find a bang maid cause theres no such thing."
                        "I already did...your mom....good bye.".

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                        • #13
                          All right... Is it sad that I saw this and the very first thing I was going to ask you was "Where does gravity come from?"

                          Okay... Lessee... What is time? And how does gravity affect it?
                          Officially declared an Intense Muscle Godfather as of April 3, 2007!!!

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by fatslob View Post
                            All right... Is it sad that I saw this and the very first thing I was going to ask you was "Where does gravity come from?"

                            Okay... Lessee... What is time? And how does gravity affect it?
                            TOMMY GO AWAY THIS ONE'S MINE!!!

                            This is exactly what I have been studying for the past 10 years and I'm pretty damn good at explaining it.

                            I am currently typing the answer (or the best answer I can come up with, anyway...).
                            Ph.D., Theoretical Physics '16
                            kind of a douche

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                            • #15
                              Cool thread. I have A LOT of questions lol. I'll do one at a time.

                              The theory that the universe is always expanding... why, and where can it be expanding into?

                              I have taken some advanced undergraduate (yes- oxymoron) calc courses so feel free to throw around math terms. I love that stuff.
                              Last edited by marlon; 09-30-2009, 06:10 PM.
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