The Great Design
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The Great Design : Particles, Fields, and Creation

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Description

Although modern physics surrounds us, and newspapers constantly refer to its concepts, most nonscientists find the subject extremely intimidating. Complicated mathematics or gross oversimplifications written by laypersons obscure most attempts to explain physics to general readers. Now, at long last, we have a comprehensive--and comprehensible--account of particles, fields, and cosmology, written by a working physicist who does not burden the reader with the weight of ponderous scientific notation. Exploring how physicists think about problems, Robert K. Adair considers the assumptions they make in order to simplify impossibly complex relationships between objects, how they determine on what scale to treat the problem, how they make measurements, and the interplay between theory and experiment. Adair gently guides the reader through the ideas of particles, fields, relativity, and quantum mechanics. He explains the great discoveries of this century--which have caused a revolution in how we view the universe--in simple, logical terms, comprehensible with a knowledge of high school algebra. Performing the difficult task of predigesting complex concepts, Adair gives nonscientists access to what often appears to be an arcane discipline, and captures the joy of discovery which lies at the heart of research.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 384 pages
  • 156.2 x 234.4 x 25.1mm | 597.18g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 159 line illustrations
  • 0195060695
  • 9780195060690

Back cover copy

Now, at long last, we have a comprehensive - and comprehensible - account of particles, fields, and cosmology, written by a working physicist who does not burden the reader with the weight of ponderous scientific notation. Performing the difficult task of predigesting complex concepts, Robert K. Adair gives non scientists access to what often appears to be an arcane discipline, and captures the joy of discovery which lies at the heart of research.show more

About Robert K. Adair

Robert K. Adair is Eugene Higgins Professor of Physics at Yale University. He is the author of Concepts in Physics and (with Earle C. Fowler) Strange Particles.show more

Review quote

' a straightforward, unfussy and well-ordered account of the core concepts of relativistic particle physics.' Nature ' Adair is a long-time outstanding researcher and teacher in the field of particle physics. He has digested many of the seemingly impossible-to-understand concepts for general readers, and has presented these concepts in the book...Excellent illustrations are used throughout. Highly recommended for all libraries.' Choiceshow more

Table of contents

Concepts of physics; Invariance and conservation laws; Covariance, scalars, vectors and tensors; The discrete in nature - the atoms of Demokritos; The continuum in nature - Faraday's fields; The nature of space and time - the special theory of relativity; The equivalence principle and the general theory of relativity; The electro-magnetic field - the first unified field theory; The problem of change - the second law of thermodynamics; Quantum mechanics - determinism to probablility; The atom - a quantum laboratory; Fundamental particles and forces - an introduction; Symmetries and conservation laws - CPT; The strong interactions; The weak interactions; Cosmology - the world's beginning and end; Gauge invariance - the unification of fields; To the ultimate theory - through a glass darkly.show more

Rating details

6 ratings
4.5 out of 5 stars
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4 50% (3)
3 0% (0)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
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