Discovery of the atom

Discussion in 'Physics' started by amilton542, Apr 22, 2011.

  1. amilton542

    Thread Starter Active Member

    Nov 13, 2010
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    The discovery of the atom and it's construction is something that puzzles me. I looked up many websites on the subject but none clearly define what i want to know. There are many atomic orbits, atom configurations and so on but how do they know this? They even know the mass of an ELECTRON, how do you calculate the mass of an electron you can't even see! :confused:
     
  2. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
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    We know what we know because there is a theory whose predictions can be tested by REPEATABLE experiments, and there is a mountain of experimental data that can be used to expand and refine the theoretical framework. Theory and experiment go hand in hand in Physics. Contrast this situation with the fantastic claims of pseudo science and you have a leg up on forces of ignorance.

    As for the mass of the electron, try this link for a simple setup you can duplicate
    www.physics.mcgill.ca/~bretonr/files/Experiment4.pdf
     
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  3. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
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    They calculated the mass of the moon long, long before we touched it, using the theory of gravity. Look into the theory of it all and you'll find theres a way to derive those things.
     
  4. PackratKing

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
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    :p......I'm from Missouri......:p

    Yer gonna have to fire up yer "electron" microscope, and show me what an atom actually looks like.

    Fine and dandy all the fancy experiments contrived, one can estimate, or guesstimate all you want.

    All efforts thus far, are "close-but-no-cigar "
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2011
  5. beenthere

    Retired Moderator

    Apr 20, 2004
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  6. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
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    Why should we bother? You probably wouldn't believe it even if it was right before your eyes so to speak. Kinda like folks who ask for a birth certificate asking for more after seeing it and concluding that it does not confirm their preconceived notions. It is an endless regress and a complete waste of time to show you an atom because I don't believe you would believe it even if it was right in front of you.
     
  7. PackratKing

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
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    Dang, if that wasn't cold-blooded and totally un-called for.. and please explain what in hang a birth cert. has to do with the price of tea in china ?? or Hawaii for that matter :D:rolleyes:

    Of course I would believe photoghraphic evidence, my barb simply pointed up the fact that it is not available as yet.

    There are a lot of subjects in "science" that are still merely speculation and conjecture. whether you are willing to admit it or not !!

    @ Papabravo -- I'm sorry that you seem unable to take a good natured ribbing !! :D

    @ Beenthere.......Thank you for that link !! A quick perousal tells me I have some serious reading to do tonight :)
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2011
  8. magnet18

    Senior Member

    Dec 22, 2010
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    It's kinda difficult to accuratley photograph something so small that we can't controll anything smaller than it...
    currently the best thing we can control is an electron, so we cant photograph electrons...
    it's like trying to see what a car by smashing another car into it.
    Scanning electron microscopes are like trying to determine the shape of the sears tower by throwing ping-pong balls at it and looking at where they land... somehow they still work...
     
  9. Papabravo

    Expert

    Feb 24, 2006
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    I think you're being disingenuous on purpose. You know very well that a traditional photograph using visible light is not possible given the relationship between the size of protons and electrons and the wavelength of visible light. Asking for such a thing is actually a stunning display of hubris.
     
  10. PackratKing

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
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    Certainly I understand the shortfall of conventional photo equipment. I went to a dedicated tech school on my G.I. Bill, and spent the better part of 28 years repairing [ film] cameras of every stripe, as well as semi-professional photography. Both of which I still do.

    Nonetheless, I get a kick out of some "scientific" attempts to explain how things work, or came to be in the first place.

    You wanna cite -- Hubris? :eek:
    Two shining examples -- The Big Bang / expanding universe T-h-e-o-r-y - & Darwins' brainchild - Evolution ? give me a break !! :p

    It is next to impossible to wrap ones head around the fact that the universe is boundless.
    The immense distance represented by one light year, let alone several Billion ?? c'mon now !!

    Indeed the Hubble reaches way out there.. but please stop looking for the end/edge.. there ain't one!

    Order certainly does not arise voluntarily out of chaos....never did, never will.

    Who wrote the immutable laws of Math, Physics and Chemistry ? or gave mankind the curiosity and intelligence to discover and use them, or for that matter, the free will to be able to invent the means to annihilate ourselves many times over ??

    I have no issues with the physical workings of electronics as we have attempted to understand them, although we argue endlessly about which direction current flows.............:D

    There is soooo much about "science" we do not have a handle on, and some of our best-shot theories give voice to unbridled Hubris !!
     
    Last edited: May 6, 2011
  11. PackratKing

    Well-Known Member

    Jul 13, 2008
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    Want a decent understanding of atomic structure, google deeply into the discipline of metalurgy, and other crystal anatomy, like common salt "grown" in evaporation ponds for the water softener etc. The crystal lattice is easily seen, and crystals can be carefully cleaved to reveal basic shapes

    We have a fair understanding of different chemical interactions in the alloy of metals, and have good equipment to examine and observe what is happening to crystal structure during various heat-treating processes.

    An example in steel, are the carbide alloys. Some amazingly tough and durable machining cutters.

    We can see down to crystal structure, but still can only wonder what mechanism actually holds it all together.
     
  12. bradstormer

    Member

    Aug 6, 2010
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    even if we had good enough photogarphic equipment, due to the uncertainty principle would it be possible to find the atom in order to photograph it?:confused:
     
  13. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    http://www.aip.org/history/einstein/atoms.htm

    Since you are talking about using light, you can't photograph it. An individual photon doesn't interact with an atom that way. But there are other ways, as shown above. It was mentioned on another thread elsewhere.
     
  14. BillO

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    Exactly what proof would you need to accept evolution?
     
  15. BillO

    Well-Known Member

    Nov 24, 2008
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    It is an interesting thing. Someone can completely dismiss the current atomic model as speculative bunk, and do it using technology (a PC and the internet) that was developed from that model whilst using energy that was was generated using that model.

    Absolutely freaking amazing.:eek:
     
  16. bradstormer

    Member

    Aug 6, 2010
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    it is kind of odd tho. when they use the word particle to describe an electron, i picture like a tiny sphere. but do they really mean a solid thing or wold it more akin to a string like in string theory.
    there are competeing models of the atom to rutherfords, and they are just models. its just that rutherfords is the simplist to understand and teach
     
  17. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
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    I tend to think in terms of something misty and insubstantial, almost not there. This goes for electrons too. In terms of substance it is more of a field than substantial.
     
  18. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    Now I have to go look up "hubris".

    Meanwhile, I invite Packratking to use that time to present better models of math, physics, and chemistry than the feeble ones that made the computer he is typing on.
     
  19. #12

    Expert

    Nov 30, 2010
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    OK. I looked up "hubris". Will await better models of atoms, the universe, and everything.
     
  20. samuelsun

    New Member

    Nov 3, 2010
    10
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    Hi to all ,
    even we do not see proton an also neutron how can we say neutron have no charge .. In this way many theories invent .. electron mass is calculated by Milkian's Droplet method.All these theories depend upon a base which is atom ...
     
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