Timeline of microphysics

Timeline of quantum mechanics, molecular physics, atomic physics, nuclear physics, and particle physics

* 585 BC Buddha stated that there were indivisible particles of mind and matter which vibrated 3 trillion times in the blink of an eye which he called "kalapas"
* 440 BC Democritus speculates about fundamental indivisible particles—calls them "atoms"

The beginning of chemistry

* 1766 Henry Cavendish discovers and studies hydrogen
* 1778 Carl Scheele and Antoine Lavoisier discover that air is composed mostly of nitrogen and oxygen
* 1781 Joseph Priestley creates water by igniting hydrogen and oxygen
* 1800 William Nicholson and Anthony Carlisle use electrolysis to separate water into hydrogen and oxygen
* 1803 John Dalton introduces atomic ideas into chemistry and states that matter is composed of atoms of different weights
* 1805 Thomas Young conducts Double-slit experiment (approximate time)
* 1811 Amedeo Avogadro claims that equal volumes of gases should contain equal numbers of molecules
* 1832 Michael Faraday states his laws of electrolysis
* 1871 Dmitri Ivanovich Mendeleev systematically examines the periodic table and predicts the existence of gallium, scandium, and germanium
* 1873 Johannes van der Waals introduces the idea of weak attractive forces between molecules
* 1885 Johann Balmer finds a mathematical expression for observed hydrogen line wavelengths
* 1887 Heinrich Hertz discovers the photoelectric effect
* 1894 Lord Rayleigh and William Ramsay discover argon by spectroscopically analyzing the gas left over after nitrogen and oxygen are removed from air
* 1895 William Ramsay discovers terrestrial helium by spectroscopically analyzing gas produced by decaying uranium
* 1896 Antoine Becquerel discovers the radioactivity of uranium
* 1896 Pieter Zeeman studies the splitting of sodium D lines when sodium is held in a flame between strong magnetic poles
* 1897 J.J. Thomson discovers the electron
* 1898 William Ramsay and Morris Travers discover neon, and negatively charged beta particles

The age of quantum mechanics

* 1900 Paul Villard discovers gamma-rays while studying uranium decay
* 1900 Johannes Rydberg refines the expression for observed hydrogen line wavelengths
* 1900 Max Planck states his quantum hypothesis and blackbody radiation law
* 1902 Philipp Lenard observes that maximum photoelectron energies are independent of illuminating intensity but depend on frequency
* 1902 Theodor Svedberg suggests that fluctuations in molecular bombardment cause the Brownian motion
* 1905 Albert Einstein explains the photoelectric effect
* 1906 Charles Barkla discovers that each element has a characteristic X-ray and that the degree of penetration of these X-rays is related to the atomic weight of the element
* 1909 Hans Geiger and Ernest Marsden discover large angle deflections of alpha particles by thin metal foils
* 1909 Ernest Rutherford and Thomas Royds demonstrate that alpha particles are doubly ionized helium atoms
* 1911 Ernest Rutherford explains the Geiger-Marsden experiment by invoking a nuclear atom model and derives the Rutherford cross section
* 1911 Jean Perrin proves the existence of atoms and molecules
* 1912 Max von Laue suggests using crystal lattices to diffract X-rays
* 1912 Walter Friedrich and Paul Knipping diffract X-rays in zinc blende
* 1913 William Henry Bragg and William Lawrence Bragg work out the Bragg condition for strong X-ray reflection
* 1913 Henry Moseley shows that nuclear charge is the real basis for numbering the elements
* 1913 Niels Bohr presents his quantum model of the atom
* 1913 Robert Millikan measures the fundamental unit of electric charge
* 1913 Johannes Stark demonstrates that strong electric fields will split the Balmer spectral line series of hydrogen
* 1914 James Franck and Gustav Hertz observe atomic excitation
* 1914 Ernest Rutherford suggests that the positively charged atomic nucleus contains protons
* 1915 Arnold Sommerfeld develops a modified Bohr atomic model with elliptic orbits to explain relativistic fine structure
* 1916 Gilbert N. Lewis and Irving Langmuir formulate an electron shell model of chemical bonding
* 1917 Albert Einstein introduces the idea of stimulated radiation emission
* 1921 Alfred Landé introduces the Landé g-factor
* 1922 Arthur Compton studies X-ray photon scattering by electrons
* 1922 Otto Stern and Walther Gerlach show "space quantization"
* 1923 Louis de Broglie suggests that electrons may have wavelike properties
* 1923 Lise Meitner discovers the Auger process
* 1924 John Lennard-Jones proposes a semiempirical interatomic force law
* 1924 Satyendra Bose and Albert Einstein introduce Bose-Einstein statistics
* 1925 Wolfgang Pauli states the quantum exclusion principle
* 1925 George Uhlenbeck and Samuel Goudsmit postulate electron spin
* 1925 Pierre Auger discovers the Auger process (2 years after Lise Meitner)
* 1925 Werner Heisenberg, Max Born, and Pascual Jordan formulate quantum matrix mechanics
* 1926 Erwin Schrödinger states his nonrelativistic quantum wave equation and formulates quantum wave mechanics
* 1926 Erwin Schrödinger proves that the wave and matrix formulations of quantum theory are mathematically equivalent
* 1926 Oskar Klein and Walter Gordon state their relativistic quantum wave equation, now the Klein-Gordon equation
* 1926 Enrico Fermi discovers the spin-statistics connection
* 1926 Paul Dirac introduces Fermi-Dirac statistics
* 1927 Clinton Davisson, Lester Germer, and George Paget Thomson confirm the wavelike nature of electrons
* 1927 Werner Heisenberg states the quantum uncertainty principle
* 1927 Max Born interprets the probabilistic nature of wavefunctions
* 1927 Walter Heitler and Fritz London introduce the concepts of valence bond theory and apply it to the hydrogen molecule.
* 1927 Thomas and Fermi develop the Thomas-Fermi model
* 1927 Max Born and Robert Oppenheimer introduce the Born-Oppenheimer approximation
* 1928 Chandrasekhara Raman studies optical photon scattering by electrons
* 1928 Paul Dirac states his relativistic electron quantum wave equation
* 1928 Charles G. Darwin and Walter Gordon solve the Dirac equation for a Coulomb potential
* 1928 Friedrich Hund and Robert S. Mulliken introduce the concept of molecular orbital
* 1929 Oskar Klein discovers the Klein paradox
* 1929 Oskar Klein and Yoshio Nishina derive the Klein-Nishina cross section for high energy photon scattering by electrons
* 1929 Nevill Mott derives the Mott cross section for the Coulomb scattering of relativistic electrons
* 1930 Paul Dirac introduces electron hole theory
* 1930 Erwin Schrödinger predicts the zitterbewegung motion
* 1930 Fritz London explains van der Waals forces as due to the interacting fluctuating dipole moments between molecules
* 1931 John Lennard-Jones proposes the Lennard-Jones interatomic potential
* 1931 Irene Joliot-Curie and Frédéric Joliot observe but misinterpret neutron scattering in paraffin
* 1931 Wolfgang Pauli puts forth the neutrino hypothesis to explain the apparent violation of energy conservation in beta decay
* 1931 Linus Pauling discovers resonance bonding and uses it to explain the high stability of symmetric planar molecules
* 1931 Paul Dirac shows that charge quantization can be explained if magnetic monopoles exist
* 1931 Harold Urey discovers deuterium using evaporation concentration techniques and spectroscopy
* 1932 John Cockcroft and Ernest Walton split lithium and boron nuclei using proton bombardment
* 1932 James Chadwick discovers the neutron
* 1932 Werner Heisenberg presents the proton-neutron model of the nucleus and uses it to explain isotopes
* 1932 Carl D. Anderson discovers the positron
* 1933 Ernst Stueckelberg (1932), Lev Davidovich Landau (1932), and Clarence Zener discover the Landau-Zener transition
* 1933 Max Delbruck suggests that quantum effects will cause photons to be scattered by an external electric field
* 1934 Irene Joliot-Curie and Frédéric Joliot bombard aluminum atoms with alpha particles to create artificially radioactive phosphorus-30
* 1934 Leó Szilárd realizes that nuclear chain reactions may be possible
* 1934 Enrico Fermi formulates his theory of beta decay
* 1934 Lev Davidovich Landau tells Edward Teller that nonlinear molecules may have vibrational modes which remove the degeneracy of an orbitally degenerate state (Jahn-Teller effect)
* 1934 Enrico Fermi suggests bombarding uranium atoms with neutrons to make a 93 proton element
* 1934 Pavel Alekseyevich Cherenkov reports that light is emitted by relativistic particles traveling in a nonscintillating liquid
* 1935 Hideki Yukawa presents a theory of strong interactions and predicts mesons
* 1935 Albert Einstein, Boris Podolsky, and Nathan Rosen put forth the EPR paradox
* 1935 Henry Eyring develop the transition state theory
* 1935 Niels Bohr presents his analysis of the EPR paradox
* 1936 Eugene Wigner develops the theory of neutron absorption by atomic nuclei
* 1936 Hermann Arthur Jahn and Edward Teller present their systematic study of the symmetry types for which the Jahn-Teller effect is expected
* 1937 Hans Hellmann finds the Hellmann-Feynman theorem
* 1937 Seth Neddermeyer, Carl Anderson, J.C. Street, and E.C. Stevenson discover muons using cloud chamber measurements of cosmic rays
* 1939 Richard Feynman finds the Hellmann-Feynman theorem
* 1939 Otto Hahn and Fritz Strassmann bombard uranium salts with thermal neutrons and discover barium among the reaction products
* 1939 Lise Meitner and Otto Robert Frisch determine that nuclear fission is taking place in the Hahn-Strassmann experiments
* 1942 Enrico Fermi makes the first controlled nuclear chain reaction
* 1942 Ernst Stueckelberg introduces the propagator to positron theory and interprets positrons as negative energy electrons moving backwards through spacetime
* 1943 Sin-Itiro Tomonaga publishes his paper on the basic physical principles of quantum electrodynamics
* 1947 Willis Lamb and Robert Retheford measure the Lamb-Retheford shift
* 1947 Cecil Powell, César Lattes, and Giuseppe Occhialini discover the pi-meson by studying cosmic ray tracks
* 1947 Richard Feynman presents his propagator approach to quantum electrodynamics
* 1948 Hendrik Casimir predicts a rudimentary attractive Casimir force on a parallel plate capacitor
* 1951 Martin Deutsch discovers positronium
* 1952 David Bohm propose his interpretation of quantum mechanics
* 1953 Robert Wilson observes Delbruck scattering of 1.33 MeV gamma-rays by the electric fields of lead nuclei
* 1954 Chen Ning Yang and Robert Mills investigate a theory of hadronic isospin by demanding local gauge invariance under isotopic spin space rotations---first non-Abelian gauge theory
* 1955 Owen Chamberlain, Emilio Segrè, Clyde Wiegand, and Thomas Ypsilantis discover the antiproton
* 1956 Frederick Reines and Clyde Cowan detect antineutrino
* 1956 Chen Ning Yang and Tsung Lee propose parity violation by the weak nuclear force
* 1956 Chien Shiung Wu discovers parity violation by the weak force in decaying cobalt
* 1957 Gerhart Luders proves the CPT theorem
* 1957 Richard Feynman, Murray Gell-Mann, Robert Marshak, and Ennackel Sudarshan propose a vector/axial vector (VA) Lagrangian for weak interactions
* 1958 Marcus Sparnaay experimentally confirms the Casimir effect
* 1959 Yakir Aharonov and David Bohm predict the Aharonov-Bohm effect
* 1960 R.G. Chambers experimentally confirms the Aharonov-Bohm effect
* 1961 Murray Gell-Mann and Yuval Ne'eman discover the Eightfold Way patterns---SU(3) group
* 1961 Jeffrey Goldstone considers the breaking of global phase symmetry
* 1962 Leon Lederman shows that the electron neutrino is distinct from the muon neutrino

The formation and successes of the Standard Model

* 1963 Murray Gell-Mann and George Zweig propose the quark/aces model
* 1964 Peter Higgs considers the breaking of local phase symmetry
* 1964 John Stewart Bell shows that all local hidden variable theories must satisfy Bell's inequality
* 1964 Val Fitch and James Cronin observe CP violation by the weak force in the decay of K mesons
* 1967 Steven Weinberg puts forth his electroweak model of leptons
* 1969 John Clauser, Michael Horne, Abner Shimony and Richard Holt propose a polarization correlation test of Bell's inequality
* 1970 Sheldon Glashow, John Iliopoulos, and Luciano Maiani propose the charm quark
* 1971 Gerard 't Hooft shows that the Glashow-Salam-Weinberg electroweak model can be renormalized
* 1972 Stuart Freedman and John Clauser perform the first polarization correlation test of Bell's inequality
* 1973 David Politzer proposes the asymptotic freedom of quarks
* 1974 Burton Richter and Samuel Ting discover the psi meson implying the existence of the charm quark
* 1974 Robert J. Buenker and Sigrid D. Peyerimhoff introduce the multireference configuration interaction method.
* 1975 Martin Perl discovers the tau lepton
* 1977 Steve Herb finds the upsilon resonance implying the existence of the beauty/bottom quark
* 1982 Alain Aspect, J. Dalibard, and G. Roger perform a polarization correlation test of Bell's inequality that rules out conspiratorial polarizer communication
* 1983 Carlo Rubbia, Simon van der Meer, and the CERN UA-1 collaboration find the W and Z intermediate vector bosons
* 1989 The Z intermediate vector boson resonance width indicates three quark-lepton generations
* 1994 The CERN LEAR Crystal Barrel Experiment justifies the existence of glueballs (exotic meson).
* 1995 after 18 years searching at Fermilab was discovered the top quark, it had very big mass
* 1998 Super-Kamiokande (Japan) observes evidence for neutrino oscillations, implying that at least one neutrino has mass.
* 2001 The Sudbury Neutrino Observatory (Canada) confirms the existence of neutrino oscillations.
* 2005 At the RHIC accelerator of Brookhaven National Laboratory they have created a quark-gluon liquid of very low viscosity, perhaps the quark-gluon plasma
* 2008 The Large Hadron Collider at CERN is scheduled to begin operation in this year and has a big chance to find the Higgs boson later


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