Physics

A Something Called Nothing

A Something Called Nothing

 

Does “nothing” exist?

Here are some DEEPS thoughts about the something we call nothing:

1. The understanding of the zero by ancient cultures such as the Egyptians and Greeks was crucial in the development of trade and economy.  Although, the Greeks still despised the zero integer because of philosophical reasons.

2. Even in an absolute vacuum, theoretical physicists suggest that “virtual particles” are popping in and our of existence and theories argue that there is a positive energy of empty space.

3. Matter in its most simple form, subatomic particles, is best described as only mathematical values in wave functions or quantum clouds.  Thus it is very possible that there is actually no “thing”  there at all, just energy.

4. If energy is not considered a “thing” then Einsteins famous equation, E=MC^2, proves that something can be made from nothing.  More specifically that mass can be created from pure energy.

5. Even if we imagine an infinitely small, zero radius empty space with no physical properties, mass, or energy.  This “nothing” still has dimensions and the laws of physics.

6.  The space that an atom occupies is 99% empty space.  If it was blown up to the size of a baseball field, the atomic nucleus would be the size of a bowling ball at second base and the electrons would be like ping-pong balls circling around the stands.  …and with quantum mechanics, this picture gets even weirder.

7. Some theorists propose that mere quantum fluctuations can generate universes from nothing.

 

The best way I can describe nothing is that the only way for nothing to exist is for it to not exist.

 

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*video provided by the American Museum of Natural History’s Isaac Asimov Memorial Debate,  to view information about this years debate go to http://www.amnh.org/calendar/isaac-asimov-memorial-debate.

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