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Molecular Sudden and gradual commencements of vibration fluorescence. Molecular Problem of seven vibrating particles Dynamical explanation. Molecular Difficulties regarding polarization by reflection double refraction. Molar Anisotropy rejected aeolotropy suggested by Prof Lushington. Molar Three sets of plane waves with fronts parallel to one plane wave.

Molecular Application of Sellmeiers dynamical theory to the dark lines. Molar Rates of transmitting energy outwards by the two waves Molecular Model vibrator excitation of synchronous vibrators in molecule. Eeflection op Light.


Molar Refraction in opaque substances Translucence of metallic films. Molar Errors in construction of Fresnels rhomb determined. Dynamical testcases for the B M doctrine reflections of ball.

Baltimore Lectures on Molecular Dynamics and the Wave Theory of Light

Ether is gravitationless matter filling all space Total amount. Stable equilibrium of several electrions in an atom Exhaustion. Electrionic explanation of pyroelectricity and piezoelectricity. Interior melting of ice James Thomsons physical theory.

The influence of frictionless wind on waves in friction. Waves under motive power of gravity and cohesion. Homogeneous assemblage of bodies theorem of Bravais Thirteen. Different qualities on two parallel sides of a crystal oppositely.

Static grounds for inequalities in finite strain of elastic materials | SpringerLink

Ternary tactics in lateral and terminal faces of quartz. His experiences in cable-laying had taught him much, and in return he was now to teach science in navigation. First he reformed the mariners' compass, lightening the moving parts to avoid protracted oscillations, and shortening the needles to facilitate the correction of the quadrantal and other errors arising from the magnetism of the ship's hull.

At first the Admiralty would have none of it. Even the Astronomer Royal condemned it. But the compass won its way, first with the Mercantile Marine, and then was universally adopted in the Navy. The compass, as well as his galvanometers and siphon recorders, and other instruments were constructed by the optical firm of James White of Glasgow.

In this business Thomson became a partner, and later the principal owner and director. He was an exceedingly able judge of good workmanship, and a keen man of business. Dissatisfied with the clumsy appliances used in sounding, when the ship had to be stopped before the sounding line could be let down, he devised the now well-known apparatus for taking flying soundings by using a line of steel piano wire.

He was vastly interested in the question of the tides, not merely as a sailor, but because of the interest attending their mathematical treatment in connection with the problems of the rotation of spheroids, the harmonic analysis of their complicated periods by Fourier's methods, and their relation to hydrodynamic problems generally. He invented a tide-predicting machine, which will predict for any given port the rise and fall of the tides, which it gives in the form of a continuous curve recorded on paper; the entire curves for a whole year being inscribed by the machine automatically in about four hours.

Further than this, adopting a beautiful mechanical integrator, the device of his ingenious brother, Professor James Thomson, he invented a harmonic analyser — the first of its kind — capable not only of solving differential equations of any order, but of analysing any given periodic curve, sure as the tidal records, and exhibiting the values of the coefficients of the various terms of the Fourier series.

Wave problems always had a fascination for him, and the work of the mathematicians Poisson and Cauchy, on the propagation of wave-motion were familiar studies. Together they studied the theory of waves, "which he loved," says Helmholtz, "to treat as a race between us. Lady Kelvin, who survives him, became the centre of his home in Glasgow and the inseparable companion of aIl his later travels. Throughout the seventies and eighties Sir William Thomson's scientific activities were continued with untiring zeal.

In he visited America, bringing back with him a pair of Graham Bell's earliest experimental telephones. Amongst the matters that cannot be omitted in any notice of his life was Lord Kelvin's controversy with the geologists. He had from three independent lines of argument inferred that the age of the earth could not be infinite, and that the time demanded by the geologists and biologists for the development of life must be finite.

He himself estimated it at about a hundred million of years at the most. In vain did the naturalists, headed by Huxley, protest. He stuck to his propositions with unrelaxing tenacity but unwavering courtesy. His position was never really shaken, though the later researches of Perry, and the discovery by Strutt of the degree to which the constituent rocks of the earth contain radioactive matter, the disgregration of which generates internal heat, may so far modify the estimate as to increase somewhat the figure which he assigned.

In he was President of the British Association at its meeting in Edinburgh. In his Presidential Address, which ranged luminously over the many branches of science within the scope of the Association, he hazarded the suggestion that the germa of life might have been brought to the earth by some meteorite.

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With the advent of electric lighting about the year Thomson's attention was naturally attracted to this branch of the practical applications of science. He never had any prejudice against the utilisation of science for practical ends. The life and soul of science is its practical application; and just as the great advances in mathematics have been made through the desire of discovering the solution of problems which were of a highly practical kind in mathematical science, so in physical science many of the greatest advances that have been made from the beginning of the world to the present time have been made in the earnest desire to turn the knowledge of the properties of matter to some purpose useful to mankind.

Lord Kelvin's patented inventions were very numerous. Without counting in those since , taken mostly in the name of Kelvin and James White, they number Of these 11 relate to telegraphy, 11 relate to compasses and navigation apparatus, 6 relate to dynamo machines or electric lamps, 25 to electric measuring instruments, 1 to the electrolytic production of alkali, and 2 to valves for fluids. He was an independent inventor of the zigzag method of winding alternators, which the public knew under the Dame of Ferranti's machine, which was manufactured under royalties payable to him.

He was interested even in devising such details as fuses and the suspension pulleys with differential gearing by which incandescent lamps can be raised or lowered. In his Presidential Address to the Mathematical and Physical Section of the British Association at York in he spoke of the electrical transmission and storage of energy, and of the possibility of utilising the powers of Niagara.

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He also read two papers, in one of which he showed mathematically that in a shunt dynamo best economy of working was attained when the resistance of the outer circuit was a geometric mean between the resistances of the armature and of the shunt. In the other he laid down the famous law of the economy of copper lines for the transmission of power. Helmholtz, visiting him again in , found him absorbed in regulators and measuring apparatus for electric lighting and electric railways.

At the same time he was revolving over the speculations which later in the same year he was to pour out in such marvellous abundance in his famous twenty lectures in Baltimore, "On Molecular Dynamics and the Wave Theory of Light. Of this extraordinary work, done at the age of sixty, it is difficult to speak.

Day after day he led the twenty-one "coefficients" who sat at his feet, through the mazes of the solid-elastic theory and the spring-shell molecule, newly invented in order to give a conception how the molecules of matter are related to the ether through which light-waves are propagated. Part of the extreme interest of the course arose from the circumstance that he had neither written out the lectures beforehand, nor had even prepared a consistent programme. Admitted to the very laboratory of his thoughts, his hearers became eyewitnesses of his methods, his amazing intuitive grasp, his headlong leaps, his mathematical agility, his perpetual recurrence to physical interpretations, his vivid use of mechanical analogies and his incessant resort to models, actual or imaginary, by which his meaning could be conveyed.

His audience began to see that here was a man who thought things out for himself from first principles, making discoveries even while lecturing, and enjoying the surprises that some of the things he was newly discovering for himself had already been discovered by others. AIl his life he had been endeavouring to discover a rational mechanical explanation for the most recondite phenomena — the mysteries of magnetism, the marvels of electricity, the difficulties of crystaIlography, the contradictory properties of ether, the anomalies of optics.

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While Thomson had been seeking to explain electricity and magnetism and light dynamically, or as mechanical properties, if not of matter, at least of ether, Maxwell the most eminent of his many disciples had boldly propounded the electromagnetic theory of light, and had drawn aIl the younger men after him in acceptance of the generalisation that the waves of light were essentially electromagnetic displacements in the ether.

Thomson had never accepted Maxwell's theory. It is true that in he gave a nominal adhesion, and in the preface which, in , he wrote to Hertz's "Electric Waves. Thomson's Baltimore lectures, abounding as they do in brilliant and ingenious points, and ranging from the most recondite problems of optics to speculations on crystal rigidity, the tactics of molecules and the size of atoms, leave one with the sense of their being a sort of protest of a man persuaded against his own instincts, and struggling to find new expression of his thoughts so as to retain his old ways of regarding the ultimate dynamics of physical nature.

The lectures were revised and extended by him, but were published as a volume only in One characteristic of aIl Lord Kelvin's teaching was his peculiar fondness for illustrating obscure notions by models. Possibly he derived this habit from Faraday; but he pushed its use far beyond anything prior.

He was never satisfied until he could make a mechanical model to illustrate his ideas. This use of models is indeed to be found in the work of every follower of Faraday. Maxwell designed physical models as we have seen.

Baltimore Lectures Molecular Dynamics Wave Theory Light

FitzGerald conceived a remarkable model of the ether. Andrew Gray has liberally employed them.


The work of Sir Oliver Lodge teems with models of all sorts. It has become characteristic of the tone and temper of British physicists, of none more than of Lord Kelvin. Where Poisson or Laplace saw a mathematical formula, Kelvin with true physical imagination discerned a reality which could be roughly simulated in the concrete.