BlackBody Theory and the Quantum Discontinuity, 18941912
With a new Afterword
398 pages

© 1978, 1987
"A masterly assessment of the way the idea of quanta of radiation became part of 20thcentury physics. . . . The book not only deals with a topic of importance and interest to all scientists, but is also a polished literary work, described (accurately) by one of its original reviewers as a scientific detective story."—John Gribbin, New Scientist
"Every scientist should have this book."—Paul Davies, New Scientist
"Every scientist should have this book."—Paul Davies, New Scientist
Contents
Part One. Planck's BlackBody Theory, 18941906: The Classical Phase
I. Planck's Route to the BlackBody Problem
The BlackBody Problem
Planck and Thermodynamics
Planck and the Kinetic Theory of Gases
Planck and the Continuum and Electromagnetism
II. Planck's Statistical Heritage: Boltzmann on Irreversibility
Boltzmann's HTheorem
The First Interpretation of the HTheorem
Loschmidt's Paradox and the Combinatorial Definition of Entropy
The Conflation of "Molecular" and "Molar"
Molecular Disorder
Epilogue: Molecular Disorder and the Combinatorial Definition after 1896
III. Planck and the Electromagnetic HTheorem 18971899
Cavity Radiation without Statistics
The Entry of Statistics and Natural Radiation
Planck's "Fundamental Equation"
Entropy and Irreversibility in the Field
IV. Planck's Distribution Law and Its Derivations, 19001901
Planck's Uniqueness Theorem and the New Distribution Law
Recourse to Combinatorials
Deriving the Distribution Law
The New Status of the Radiation Constants
V. The Foundations of Planck's Radiation Theory, 19011906
The Continuity of Planck's Theory, 18941906
Natural Radiation and Equiprobable States
Energy Elements and Energy Discontinuity
The Quantum of Action and Its Presumptive Source
Planck's Early Readers, 19001906
Part Two. The Emergence of the Quantum Discontinuity, 19051912
VI. Dismantling Planck's BlackBody Theory: Ehrenfest, Rayleigh, and Jeans
The Origin of the RayleighJeans Law, 19001905
Ehrenfest's Theory of QuasiEntropies
The Impotence of Resonators
Complexion Theory and the RayleighJeans Law
VII. A New Route to BlackBody Theory: Einstein, 19021909
Einstein on Statistical Thermodynamics, 19021903
Fluctuation Phenomena and BlackBody Theory, 19041905
Einstein on Planck, 19061909
VIII. Converts to Discontinuity, 19061910
Lorentz's Rome Lecture and Its Aftermath
Planck on Discontinuity, 19081910
The Consolidation of Expert Opinion: Wien and Jeans
IX. BlackBody Theory and the State of the Quantum, 19111912
The Decline of BlackBody Theory
The Emergence of Specific Heats
Quanta and the Structure of Radiation
The Quantum and Atomic Structure
The State of the Quantum
Part Three. Epilogue
X. Planck's New Radiation Theory
Planck's "Second Theory"
Revising the Lectures
Some Uses of the Second Theory
The Fate of the Second Theory
Notes
Bibliography
Afterword: Revisiting Planck
Index
I. Planck's Route to the BlackBody Problem
The BlackBody Problem
Planck and Thermodynamics
Planck and the Kinetic Theory of Gases
Planck and the Continuum and Electromagnetism
II. Planck's Statistical Heritage: Boltzmann on Irreversibility
Boltzmann's HTheorem
The First Interpretation of the HTheorem
Loschmidt's Paradox and the Combinatorial Definition of Entropy
The Conflation of "Molecular" and "Molar"
Molecular Disorder
Epilogue: Molecular Disorder and the Combinatorial Definition after 1896
III. Planck and the Electromagnetic HTheorem 18971899
Cavity Radiation without Statistics
The Entry of Statistics and Natural Radiation
Planck's "Fundamental Equation"
Entropy and Irreversibility in the Field
IV. Planck's Distribution Law and Its Derivations, 19001901
Planck's Uniqueness Theorem and the New Distribution Law
Recourse to Combinatorials
Deriving the Distribution Law
The New Status of the Radiation Constants
V. The Foundations of Planck's Radiation Theory, 19011906
The Continuity of Planck's Theory, 18941906
Natural Radiation and Equiprobable States
Energy Elements and Energy Discontinuity
The Quantum of Action and Its Presumptive Source
Planck's Early Readers, 19001906
Part Two. The Emergence of the Quantum Discontinuity, 19051912
VI. Dismantling Planck's BlackBody Theory: Ehrenfest, Rayleigh, and Jeans
The Origin of the RayleighJeans Law, 19001905
Ehrenfest's Theory of QuasiEntropies
The Impotence of Resonators
Complexion Theory and the RayleighJeans Law
VII. A New Route to BlackBody Theory: Einstein, 19021909
Einstein on Statistical Thermodynamics, 19021903
Fluctuation Phenomena and BlackBody Theory, 19041905
Einstein on Planck, 19061909
VIII. Converts to Discontinuity, 19061910
Lorentz's Rome Lecture and Its Aftermath
Planck on Discontinuity, 19081910
The Consolidation of Expert Opinion: Wien and Jeans
IX. BlackBody Theory and the State of the Quantum, 19111912
The Decline of BlackBody Theory
The Emergence of Specific Heats
Quanta and the Structure of Radiation
The Quantum and Atomic Structure
The State of the Quantum
Part Three. Epilogue
X. Planck's New Radiation Theory
Planck's "Second Theory"
Revising the Lectures
Some Uses of the Second Theory
The Fate of the Second Theory
Notes
Bibliography
Afterword: Revisiting Planck
Index
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