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ERIC Number: EJ1177750
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2018-May
Pages: 4
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
"Physics Stories": How the Early Technologies of High Voltage and High Vacuum Led to "Modern Physics"
Greenslade, Thomas B., Jr.
Physics Teacher, v56 n5 p286-289 May 2018
Some of you may remember the 1979 television series "Connections" that was written and narrated by James Burke, a British science writer. Burke's technique was to choose a number of seemingly unrelated ideas and show how they led to developments in science and technology. This is an enjoyable business, even if some of the connections seem to be stretched at times, and led to a book by Burke. In a number of talks that I have given over the years, I have made somewhat less fanciful connections that suggest how the technologies of high vacuum and high voltage led to what used to be called "modern physics." Today we might limit the "modern" era to the years from 1890 to 1920 that gave the first workable theories of small-scale physics.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A