The idea of mass is one of the maximum essential notions in physics, comparable in importance best to those of space and time. however in contrast to the latter, which can be the challenge of innumerable bodily and philosophical research, the idea of mass has been however hardly ever investigated. here Max Jammer, a leading logician and historian of physics, presents a concise however complete, coherent, and self-contained look at of the idea of mass as it is described, interpreted, and carried out in present day physics and as it is significantly examined within the current philosophy of technological know-how. With its focus on theories proposed after the mid-Nineteen Fifties, the e-book is the primary of its type, covering the maximum latest experimental and theoretical investigations into the nature of mass and its position in contemporary physics, from the realm of essential particles to the cosmology of galaxies.
The book begins with an analysis of the chronic difficulties of defining inertial mass in a noncircular manner and discusses the related query of whether mass is an observational or a theoretical concept. It then studies the notion of mass in unique relativity and the sensitive trouble of whether or not the relativistic relaxation mass is the handiest valid notion of mass and whether it’s miles identical with the classical (Newtonian) mass. this is accompanied with the aid of a essential evaluation of the one-of-a-kind derivations of the famous mass-strength relationship E = mc2 and its conflicting interpretations. Jammer then devotes a chapter to the distinction between inertial and gravitational mass and to the various variations of the so-called equivalence precept with which Newton initiated his Principia however which also became the start line of Einstein’s wellknown relativity, which supersedes Newtonian physics. The e book concludes with a presentation of recently proposed international and nearby dynamical theories of the foundation and nature of mass.
Destined to come to be a much-consulted reference for philosophers and physicists, this ebook is also written for the nonprofessional standard reader inquisitive about the rules of physics.