**Are you an EPFL student looking for a semester project?**

Work with us on data science and visualisation projects, and deploy your project as an app on top of Graph Search.

Concept# Modern physics

Summary

Modern physics is a branch of physics that developed in the early 20th century and onward or branches greatly influenced by early 20th century physics. Notable branches of modern physics include quantum mechanics, special relativity and general relativity.
Classical physics is typically concerned with everyday conditions: speeds are much lower than the speed of light, sizes are much greater than that of atoms, and energies are relatively small. Modern physics, however, is concerned with more extreme conditions, such as high velocities that are comparable to the speed of light (special relativity), small distances comparable to the atomic radius (quantum mechanics), and very high energies (relativity). In general, quantum and relativistic effects are believed to exist across all scales, although these effects may be very small at human scale. While quantum mechanics is compatible with special relativity (See: Relativistic quantum mechanics), one of the unsolved problems in physics is the unification of quantum mechanics and general relativity, which the Standard Model of particle physics currently cannot account for.
Modern physics is an effort to understand the underlying processes of the interactions of matter using the tools of science & engineering. In a literal sense, the term modern physics means up-to-date physics. In this sense, a significant portion of so-called classical physics is modern. However, since roughly 1890, new discoveries have caused significant paradigm shifts: especially the advent of quantum mechanics (QM) and relativity (ER). Physics that incorporates elements of either QM or ER (or both) is said to be modern physics. It is in this latter sense that the term is generally used.
Modern physics is often encountered when dealing with extreme conditions. Quantum mechanical effects tend to appear when dealing with "lows" (low temperatures, small distances), while relativistic effects tend to appear when dealing with "highs" (high velocities, large distances), the "middles" being classical behavior.

Official source

This page is automatically generated and may contain information that is not correct, complete, up-to-date, or relevant to your search query. The same applies to every other page on this website. Please make sure to verify the information with EPFL's official sources.

Related courses (19)

Related publications (32)

Related people (1)

Related concepts (16)

Related MOOCs (1)

Related lectures (135)

Ontological neighbourhood

PHYS-101(a): General physics : mechanics

Le but du cours de physique générale est de donner à l'étudiant les notions de base nécessaires à la compréhension des phénomènes physiques. L'objectif est atteint lorsque l'étudiant est capable de pr

PHYS-432: Quantum field theory II

The goal of the course is to introduce relativistic quantum field theory as the conceptual and mathematical framework describing fundamental interactions such as Quantum Electrodynamics.

PHYS-207(c): General physics : quanta

Le cours traite les ondes électromagnétiques (optique géométrique et optique physique) et donne
une introduction à la physique quantique.

Theoretical physics

Theoretical physics is a branch of physics that employs mathematical models and abstractions of physical objects and systems to rationalize, explain and predict natural phenomena. This is in contrast to experimental physics, which uses experimental tools to probe these phenomena. The advancement of science generally depends on the interplay between experimental studies and theory. In some cases, theoretical physics adheres to standards of mathematical rigour while giving little weight to experiments and observations.

Field (physics)

In physics, a field is a physical quantity, represented by a scalar, vector, or tensor, that has a value for each point in space and time. For example, on a weather map, the surface temperature is described by assigning a number to each point on the map; the temperature can be considered at a certain point in time or over some interval of time, to study the dynamics of temperature change. A surface wind map, assigning an arrow to each point on a map that describes the wind speed and direction at that point, is an example of a vector field, i.

Annus mirabilis papers

The annus mirabilis papers (from Latin annus mīrābilis, "miracle year") are the four papers that Albert Einstein published in Annalen der Physik (Annals of Physics), a scientific journal, in 1905. These four papers were major contributions to the foundation of modern physics. They revolutionized science's understanding of the fundamental concepts of space, time, mass, and energy. Because Einstein published these remarkable papers in a single year, 1905 is called his annus mirabilis (miracle year in English or Wunderjahr in German).

Explores Quantum Field Theory II, emphasizing Gauge Theories, including QED, fermion masses, vector bosons, and the Higgs mechanism.

Explores Newton's laws applied to ballistic motion with friction and the harmonic oscillator model.

Explores the moment of a force, angular momentum, and central motion, including historical perspectives and mathematical representations.

Marcos Rubinstein, Farhad Rachidi-Haeri, Elias Per Joachim Le Boudec, Chaouki Kasmi, Nicolas Mora Parra, Emanuela Radici

Time-domain solutions of Maxwell’s equations in homogeneous and isotropic media are paramount to studying transient or broadband phenomena. However, analytical solutions are generally unavailable for practical applications, while numerical solutions are co ...

2024Quantum Field Theories are a central object of interest of modern physics, describing fundamental interactions of matter. However, current methods give limited insight into strongly coupling theories. S-matrix bootstrap program, described in this thesis, a ...

The interaction of light and matter enables nonlinear frequency conversion and the creation of coherent currents. The optical control of electric currents is of fundamental relevance and prominent research focus in the last decades. These photocurrents ena ...