Have you ever looked
through a microscope? It’s a very different
world from ours. But this is what
makes up our world. Those are cells in your lungs. Well, that makes you wonder
what makes of this world? What would it look
like if you zoomed in even farther to the
individual molecules that make up these cells? We didn’t know until 2009, when
a single molecule was imaged for the first time
at atomic resolution, and it looks like this. Those lines, those are
bonds you’re seeing, bonds between the atoms. Obviously, bonds don’t
look like green smears anymore than these meerkats
look like this in visible light. But that’s the thing. This image was not made
with visible light. In fact, this
molecule is invisible. It’s too small to be
resolved with visible light. All light waves have
a wavelength, right. And at the microscopic
level, that light, like this blue light
here, reflects off of things that are about the
same size as that wavelength, like this cholera. So that’s the issue here. Despite how small
visible light is, you could fit 350
of these molecules in one wavelength of blue light. And we know that atoms are even
smaller than these molecules. And atoms have electrons
and protons and neutrons. And protons have quarks. How far down can we keep going? Let’s zoom back
out for a second. We couldn’t image this
molecule with visible light. But to be honest, we couldn’t
even resolve these cells with visible light. Instead, this image was
made with electrons. It works like this. Imagine I’m trying to figure
out what this frog looks like. I can throw small things at
it, and they’ll bounce off in different directions. And some pass by, and you
get the outline of a frog. That’s how a scanning
electron microscope works. It images things
like this pollen. It operates on the weird
quantum mechanical principle that all particles
can act like waves. And the faster the particle,
the smaller the wavelength, which allows us to see
down to smaller scales. If I tried to image
this with visible light that has a much
bigger wavelength, it just wouldn’t work. Answering the original question,
scanning electron microscopes have seen down to half a
nanometer, which is still not small enough to see an atom. But in 2013, scientists
imaged a single hydrogen atom for the first time using
photo ionization microscopy. Well, sort of. What you’re seeing here
is the electrons’ wave function or the probability of
finding it in different parts. It’s kind of like making
a picture like this. This atomic portrait
is the smallest picture we’ve ever taken at the
limit of what we’ve been able to see with microscopes. So that’s as far as we can go? With imaging, yes. But we can always smash stuff. Particle colliders are one
of the more unusual ways that scientists probe small
scales, smashing particles together since the 1960s. Particle colliders use that same
quantum mechanical principle, that fast-moving particles
have smaller wavelengths. And of course, particles
smashing together are generally going pretty fast. So these particle colliders,
weird as they are in concept, work extremely well. For one, in 1968,
we discovered what makes up protons and neutrons. We discovered quarks. And we discovered that
quarks are never alone. When you try to
separate two of them, you have to put
in so much energy that by the mass
energy equivalence, you’d create two new quarks
that bind to the original two. Yeah, quarks are awesome. These are the types of
experiments going on at the Large Hadron Collider
in Geneva, Switzerland. That’s the giant
collaboration going on between over 100 countries
and 10,000 scientists. It has cost over $13 billion. That’s like eight trips to
the moon by some estimates. The LHC takes tiny
particles, like protons, and smashes them together
so hard that they explode. We measure the pieces and
recreate where they came from to figure out more about the
structure of these particles. This method of
smashing particles together is so effective
that, in 2013, we discovered a new particle, one
that had only been theorized previously, the Higgs Boson. It led to the confirmation
of many aspects of particle theory, as well as a Nobel
Prize for Peter Higgs. So let’s keep going. What is a quark made of? Well, as far as we can
tell, they have no size. That is, they have no structure. We’ve peered down into
a quark as far as 10 to the minus 19
meters, and we’ve seen nothing, no indication
of smaller components. The same is true of
electrons and neutrinos. These are all
elementary particles. And as far as we’ve
been able to measure, they are as small as it gets. Is it possible that
they have no size? Perhaps. Maybe, they are literally point
particles with zero dimension. But this creates issues
of infinite forces as you get closer and
closer to the particles. String theory has proposed a
solution to these infinities, that the particles
are made of one dimensional loops or strings. That way, some parts of
the string are closer and some are further away as
you approach the particle. And your problem of
infinities disappears. And how small are these
theoretical strings? Around the size of
the Planck length, which is, in theory, the
shortest measurable length in the universe. It is 10 to the minus 35 meters. That’s 100 quintillion
times smaller than a proton. Of course, this scale is
not very useful to us. If you asked my height,
I’d have to tell you I’m 107 billion
septillion Planck links, or just 172 centimeters. But we’re nowhere near
measuring those distances. The LHC is turning
on again in 2015. And with more and more
energy in its particle beams, we’ll be able to see at
smaller and smaller scales than we ever have before. And perhaps someday, we’ll be
able to measure the smallest distance in the universe.

Seeing the Smallest Thing in the Universe
Tagged on:                                                                 

100 thoughts on “Seeing the Smallest Thing in the Universe

  • February 5, 2019 at 3:09 am
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    W.O.W.

    Reply
  • February 6, 2019 at 2:07 pm
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    How do you image a probability???

    Reply
  • February 7, 2019 at 6:23 pm
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    I thought this was going to be about a flat earthers brain

    Reply
  • February 12, 2019 at 12:16 pm
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    Great enthusiasm, information, style of communication and very pretty.

    Reply
  • February 12, 2019 at 11:02 pm
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    Things that also cost 13 Billion dollars: the first Ford class aircraft carrier. Doe!

    Reply
  • February 13, 2019 at 11:39 pm
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    that looks nothing like a frog

    Reply
  • February 14, 2019 at 12:06 am
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    What does an electron say to a nucleus?

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  • February 14, 2019 at 12:07 am
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    Never trust an Atom… They make everything up.😝

    Reply
  • February 14, 2019 at 5:07 am
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    Yay to the metric system

    Reply
  • February 14, 2019 at 2:14 pm
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    time is running out of time,..

    Reply
  • February 18, 2019 at 5:14 am
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    How many guys are scrolling down To read the comments during watching this content??

    Reply
  • February 24, 2019 at 6:28 am
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    u look like cat

    Reply
  • February 24, 2019 at 9:38 am
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    Unbelievable! Incredible! Fantastic!..

    Reply
  • February 27, 2019 at 7:42 pm
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    Hunch. Everything will be made from whatever it is that light proves to be.

    Reply
  • March 3, 2019 at 8:18 am
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    You could be a superhero with a name like that

    Reply
  • March 9, 2019 at 10:03 am
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    2:24 Why are you happy with smashing stuff? :O like you did to that froggy

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  • March 10, 2019 at 10:03 am
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    You are soooo hot

    Reply
  • March 10, 2019 at 2:22 pm
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    Anyone else frustrated that when a woman makes scientific explanation videos, so many comments are about what she looks like… :/

    Reply
  • March 15, 2019 at 10:20 pm
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    Wow an American girl uses cm instead of feet and in !

    Reply
  • March 18, 2019 at 1:02 pm
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    Eight trips to the moon? NASA spent $25 Billion to, allegedly, go to the moon.

    Reply
  • March 20, 2019 at 2:08 pm
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    The smallest thing in the universe is the human mind.

    Reply
  • March 20, 2019 at 2:38 pm
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    shes so cute I didn't hear a thing she said lol

    Reply
  • March 22, 2019 at 2:09 pm
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    I am as tall as you

    Reply
  • March 24, 2019 at 10:53 am
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    Whatever was the smallest distance in the universe, could you not half that, and then that, and so on… ?

    Reply
  • March 26, 2019 at 9:32 am
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    The title is a lie.

    Reply
  • March 30, 2019 at 1:20 am
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    I dont think we can do that. Now i could be wrong, but i think the energy it takes to see down that small is so great that the object you are observing becomes a black hole.

    Reply
  • April 2, 2019 at 2:54 am
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    Why planks length maths has to give theorized proof for that number in cubic solutions set. Somewhat related to number phi and constraints imposed in number theory. You can take any unit like meters foot or other units of length. An other hint is 2. Something and nothing.

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  • April 3, 2019 at 12:51 pm
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    If we could image the string we would see that it is a life form meaning the universe is made of life.

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  • April 6, 2019 at 3:13 am
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    the smallest & the biggest

    Reply
  • April 7, 2019 at 3:05 am
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    You're Purrdy

    Reply
  • April 7, 2019 at 8:41 am
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    Excuse me miss you're so so so so so cute so loveliest I've ever seen.your explanation sensibility extra pretty with lot of, lot of fun

    Reply
  • April 9, 2019 at 4:38 am
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    Yeah but will it be used for good lol?

    Reply
  • April 11, 2019 at 9:07 pm
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    Quarks are made of quark meat.

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  • April 12, 2019 at 1:45 am
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    Love this! Keep it up!

    Reply
  • April 12, 2019 at 2:49 am
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    Yes, I'd smash the arse off Physics girl.

    Reply
  • April 13, 2019 at 5:53 pm
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    2:13 lol 😂😂😂

    Reply
  • April 23, 2019 at 12:44 am
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    Nice Presentation ♥

    Reply
  • April 24, 2019 at 10:42 pm
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    Interesting how the smashing of particles looks like the Laniakea structure.
    Think about that for a minute. All those microscopic galactic filaments with a small chance of life blossoming in a billionth of a second and suddenly extinguished.

    Reply
  • April 25, 2019 at 7:01 pm
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    My theory is that you don’t have to have infinite smallness if the smallest object is a ENERGY FORCE rather than matter.

    Reply
  • April 26, 2019 at 7:58 pm
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    Electrons, neutrinos, etc. could have a definite size but no internal structure, couldn't they?

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  • April 28, 2019 at 11:29 am
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    Suppose you illuminate a small object with ultraviolet light, with a frequency 3 times that of green visible light. That is supposed to be able to resolve objects 1/3 the size of what visible light can, right? Now suppose you mix the reflected UV light with another beam of UV, this one just 2 times the frequency of visible green light. It should produce sum and difference frequencies at 5x and 1x visible green light. The 1x difference frequency is visible light, so could that be directly observed? Sent through lenses or an optical microscope for a closer look? Could such a set-up resolve objects smaller than what could be seen directly in visible light?

    Reply
  • April 29, 2019 at 10:56 pm
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    Of course there are probably even smaller and smaller particles=waves adinfinatum

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  • May 5, 2019 at 12:21 am
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    Strings yes strings, that's what we'll be seeing at the most smallest level in the universe!!! In the near future no doubt……..I don't know if it'll be in our life time…

    Reply
  • May 14, 2019 at 8:37 am
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    Wait how did you get a picture of my….. ooohhh ok

    Reply
  • May 16, 2019 at 1:47 am
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    this makes a loop… the things made up of quarks are made up of things, then those things are made up of other things, the the other things are made up of more things, then the list goes on!

    Reply
  • May 18, 2019 at 2:19 am
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    What's the size of a photon? Can there ever only be a single photon?

    Reply
  • May 20, 2019 at 10:52 am
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    I was a bit confused with your height in planq's: did you mean 107, billion, septillion, or should it have been; 172, billion, septillion, meaning there is exactly a billion septillion planq's in a centimetre… -10 to the power of thirty nine meters is a lot of noughts and hard to enumerate in thousands of millions, let alone envisage as an actual distance!

    Reply
  • May 22, 2019 at 4:54 am
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    Atoms use atoms to see atoms and to put them on atoms.

    Reply
  • May 22, 2019 at 1:48 pm
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    But we can always smash stuff…brilliant.

    Reply
  • May 27, 2019 at 10:30 am
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    But by interacting with it, how much did we affect it?

    Reply
  • May 27, 2019 at 5:21 pm
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    We got better science but we never got a better heart. In 6,000 years of history there are only 200 years without wars.  All this knowledge will be used to build new weapons and untimely destroy our planet. Jesus will come back commanding a fleet of starships. He will reset our planet, clean all the destruction and stablish a kingdom. No countries, no elections, no banks, etc…The Bible is not a religious book but a real report of our contact with beings from another planetary system. They told us that we will have a war that will destroy one third of the worlds population.

    Reply
  • May 30, 2019 at 1:05 am
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    wait how can quarks be created to bond to the two new quarks? i thought matter cannot be created nor destroyed

    Reply
  • June 1, 2019 at 5:27 am
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    Such a smart gal!

    Reply
  • June 1, 2019 at 1:22 pm
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    Dance dance Diana, well, probably… 😉

    Reply
  • June 5, 2019 at 7:36 am
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    I was so anxious watching this video because i thought my ex leaked my nudes

    Reply
  • June 9, 2019 at 1:16 am
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    so wait.
    They paid how much to smash stuff over in Switzerland?
    They could'a got an estwing 3lb hammer for around $30 USD.
    It'll fix just about anything . . .

    .

    Reply
  • June 12, 2019 at 4:10 am
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    What element was that, green….

    Reply
  • June 13, 2019 at 7:07 am
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    I could have sworn to having seen NBC News broadcast pictures of an array of uranium atoms imaged using a very high powered transmission electron microscope back in the mid 1970s. One of the electron microscopists where I work said that much resolution should have been possible even with 1970s electron microscope technology if you built one with a tube about 30 feet = 9.1 meters, which would be expensive and most likely non-standard, but certainly doable. More recently (1990s), atoms adsorbed on crystal surfaces have been imaged with atomic force micropes and/or scanning tunneling microscopes (and the results published in peer-reviewed journals). So imaging individual atoms is not so new.

    Reply
  • June 14, 2019 at 12:21 pm
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    Could you make a Quark microscope?

    Reply
  • June 15, 2019 at 2:47 pm
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    If atoms are so small that they are invisible, then how can a group of atoms, molecules create things we can see?

    Reply
  • June 18, 2019 at 1:04 pm
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    God is in the detail.

    Reply
  • June 21, 2019 at 6:11 pm
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    mustaches almost made me puke

    Reply
  • June 29, 2019 at 7:11 am
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    This & This=Truth😋

    Reply
  • June 30, 2019 at 10:29 pm
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    2:06 Surely the electron wave function would have collapsed in measurement? Yet the photo is apparently it's possible positions.

    Reply
  • July 2, 2019 at 12:57 am
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    your hot but my brain hurts

    Reply
  • July 3, 2019 at 2:00 pm
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    Physics girl is so dam hot I cant concentrate on what shes is saying!!

    Reply
  • July 4, 2019 at 2:47 am
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    Why are there sub atomic particles ?

    Reply
  • July 4, 2019 at 10:32 pm
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    "is it possible that they have no size?"
    PERHAPS

    Reply
  • July 10, 2019 at 2:21 pm
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    Finally I am in right place 👍

    Reply
  • July 13, 2019 at 2:21 am
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    You can always make something smaller.We are, our own limit.

    Reply
  • July 14, 2019 at 8:45 am
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    Some day humans will realize that they will never be on a small enough level to witness the smallest thing in the Universe . Size is infinite in both directions, large or small. EATON CONJECTURE: EVERY EVEN INTEGER GREATER THEN 12 HAS MORE THEN ONE SUM OF TWO PRIMES. THIS HELPS PROVE THE GOLDBACH CONJECTURE.. THE EVEN INTEGER 1 TRILLION HAS OVER 1 BILLION DIFFERENT SUMS OF TWO PRIMES. SO HOW DO LARGER EVEN INTEGERS HAVE NO COMBINATIONS, IMPOSSIBLE.

    Reply
  • July 14, 2019 at 10:33 am
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    What's happening at the LHC (2019)

    Reply
  • July 14, 2019 at 9:36 pm
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    Scientists have gone mad, they're all quarking up.

    Reply
  • July 16, 2019 at 12:05 am
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    Well done but I need to ask if you could have done this without a script…? I couldn't….

    Reply
  • July 19, 2019 at 7:58 pm
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    Hey lady you like small things? Ha ha

    Reply
  • July 23, 2019 at 6:17 am
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    With a perfect height of 5' 7", I would her and I to explore the field of biology.

    Reply
  • July 24, 2019 at 1:14 am
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    I already saw it. It's my self esteem.

    Reply
  • July 24, 2019 at 5:35 am
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    Seeing the smallest thing in the world LOL talk about making a video to get back at your ex boyfriend!
    Cosmic shrinkage ala Seinfeld.

    Reply
  • July 28, 2019 at 5:09 am
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    Amazing Girl.

    Reply
  • July 30, 2019 at 2:22 pm
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    Interesting as always but how did we go from explaining using light to see atoms, to measuring quarks with… what?

    Reply
  • July 31, 2019 at 7:24 am
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    don't speak DOWN to your audience…some of us recognize that you are a serious, intelligent source of info…besides being good looking.

    Reply
  • August 1, 2019 at 3:19 pm
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    Like your last BF’s junk.

    Reply
  • August 2, 2019 at 1:36 am
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    If existence is considered a calculated description by universal functional principle, a "fluid" elemental meaning of the uni-dimensional state of dominant spacing, derived from the concept of connection at singularity, then this self-defining modulation positioning is a continuum bounded by zero-infinity difference, Superposition-point quantization spectrum at the Central Limit 1-0Duration interval Eternity-now.
    Arbitrary observation is an instantaneous snapshot of the cause-effect multi-phase-locked coherence/connection objective perceived as perspective.., so "size" is an arbitrary matter of objective measurement.., kind of the reverse definition of physical quantization is by relative timing connection rates/quantization, and that's the subject of Physics.

    Size <=>Matter(s)cause-effect defining quantum fields of elemental significance.

    Reply
  • August 3, 2019 at 11:56 am
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    This is endorsed by the cabal. You clearly advertised for them. (CERN)

    Reply
  • August 3, 2019 at 11:58 am
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    Um, you fail to mention that CERN is under the hands of the dark forces and they are under a nefarious agenda. Dont make it sound like CERN is a good thing.

    Reply
  • August 9, 2019 at 3:46 am
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    Very sarcastic chanelvname physics and girl didn't match up too well

    Reply
  • August 9, 2019 at 3:16 pm
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    Wow that sounds alot. Sounds like .1% of our debt

    Reply
  • August 9, 2019 at 4:50 pm
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    best video yet! more! i love you! (in a safe platonic gender neutral way)

    Reply
  • August 10, 2019 at 12:27 am
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    The Smallest Thing in the Universe is an Infinitely Finite Indivisible Singularity Having No Relative Numerical Value, Having a Numerical Value of Zero-0 Nada, Zip, Nothing. Before a Singularity can have Relative, a Numerical of One-1 it must be in motion, the first in a series, have angular momentum, velocity of speed and direction, so as to be Measurable as to Location and momentum in Space-Time. A Singularity that is not measurable as to location and Momentum in Space-Time does not exist in the Material sense of the word, has No Mass. There are two Singularities, which being of the same source are the same and yet distinctly different in Nature, the Binary Natures of the Singular Realities 0/1. A Singularity of Zero-0 has no angular momentum, no velocity of Speed and direction, is not readily apparent, is not measurable as to location and Momentum in Space-Time.

    Reply
  • August 10, 2019 at 5:43 am
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    2:18 I want to hug her 🤔

    Reply
  • August 11, 2019 at 11:18 am
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    this girl is so intelligent..dianna is great…

    Reply
  • August 11, 2019 at 8:50 pm
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    Why nanoparticles are not measurable? because they are energy, not matter

    Reply
  • August 12, 2019 at 8:48 pm
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    How can something have zero size?

    Reply
  • August 16, 2019 at 3:46 am
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    I'm taller

    Reply
  • August 16, 2019 at 7:35 am
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    I kinda take offense to the name you have chosen for your channel. It seems to imply that it's special that you're talking about physics because you're a girl. I don't see anything special in women doing physics, or anything else for that matter. (I am male btw) I do like though that you call it physics, instead of calling physics science like so many channels do (I'm pointing at you @Science Asylum!

    Reply
  • August 16, 2019 at 1:12 pm
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    "We didn't know until 2009…" I remember seeing an electron micrograph (electron-microscope-photograph) of protein molecules in my high school science text book in 1972. Gen X's & Y's are so ignorant of what came before them. (Of course, great advances since then, but it's just not true that there were no images of molecules until 2009 – she didn't specify WHICH molecules, they vary greatly in size.) One more thing, they switched the Large Hadron Collider back on in 2015, what's happened since? Any breakthroughs??

    Reply
  • August 17, 2019 at 12:15 pm
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    Are fields smaller than electrons?
    If so, can we use fields to take pictures of minute objects?

    Reply
  • August 20, 2019 at 4:07 am
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    Bless God you my sun <3 :-* :-* :-*

    Reply
  • August 21, 2019 at 3:06 pm
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    I've figured out the 'Doble Slit' experiment. They are thinking in 2D, not 3D – Spherical. This is the same mistake made when envisioning Curved Space-Time. What I don't have a FULL grasp on yet is 'Wave Collapse', if it even does' because that involves 'Quantum Entanglement', if that's even what is happing. And the 'Cat in the cardboard box has a 100% chance of determining its defacto fate if there is some kind of outside influence. It's easier to look at quantum entanglement and spin comparing it to a pliable (elastic) bar magnet where for example spin up would be a north pole and down south pole along with 'i' (sphere). But, this is a spherical bar magnet. No matter how small the sphere or large the magnetic sphere, the north, and south pole are forever ENTANGLED. You stretch it or squash it down to a Planck distance to the size of the infant universe, the magnetic pole will react instantaneously based on the inverse square, and not the speed of light because of they're intangled.

    Reply
  • August 25, 2019 at 7:47 am
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    2019: Trump has taken over the world is doomed. Particles are not interesting anymore, only videogames and I have given up on humanity and adopted video games as a coping mechanism to this dystopian society help

    Reply

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