Atoms (part 1): The Clash of the Titans

Atoms are the essence of matter, and although they were postulated by the ancient Greeks Democritus and Leucippus about 2,500 years ago, our understanding of these fundamental constituents of the universe did not emerge until the 20th century. In this first installment of the fascinating documentary series Atoms, physics professor Jim Al-Khalili walks us through the extremely tumultuous history that led to the discovery and controversy regarding the existence, structure and paradox of the atomic and subatomic worlds.

You will learn about the academic rejection that led the revolutionary theorist Ludwig Boltzmann to commit suicide, his vindication by Einstein in 1905, Rutherford's original atomic model (the one you learn in high school chemistry), Neils Bohr and his unintuitive quantum mechanics, Schrödinger and his wave function, Heisenberg and the Uncertainty Principle, and the establishment of quantum mechanics as a solidly supported scientific theory after Einstein and Schrödinger duked it out with Bohr and Heisenberg.



To understand the weird scientific proof behind particle-wave duality, watch this fun short animated video.
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