How did Max Planck arrive at the constant h = 6.626196 x 10-34 J s? Will we ever reach Planck's temperatures?
Specifically, we can rank civilizations by their energy consumption, using the following principles:
1) The laws of thermodynamics. Even an advanced civilization is bound by the laws of thermodynamics, especially the Second Law, and can hence be ranked by the energy at their disposal.
2) The laws of stable matter. Baryonic matter (e.g. based on protons and neutrons) tends to clump into three large groupings: planets, stars and galaxies. (This is a well-defined by product of stellar and galactic evolution, thermonuclear fusion, etc.) Thus, their energy will also be based on three distinct types, and this places upper limits on their rate of energy consumption.
3) The laws of planetary evolution. Any advanced civilization must grow in energy consumption faster than the frequency of life-threatening catastrophes (e.g. meteor impacts, ice ages, supernovas, etc.). If they grow any slower, they are doomed to extinction. This places mathematical lower limits on the rate of growth of these civilizations.
In a seminal paper published in 1964 in the Journal of Soviet Astronomy, Russian astrophysicist Nicolai Kardashev theorized that advanced civilizations must therefore be grouped according to three types: Type I, II, and III, which have mastered planetary, stellar and galactic forms of energy, respectively. He calculated that the energy consumption of these three types of civilization would be separated by a factor of many billions. (Kaku, 2004)
Berkeley astronomer Don Goldsmith reminds us that the Earth receives about one billionth of the suns energy, and that humans utilize about one millionth of that. So we consume about one million billionth of the suns total energy. At present, our entire planetary energy production is about 10 billion billion ergs per second. (Kaku, 2004)
For example, a Type I civilization is a truly planetary one, which has mastered most forms of planetary energy. Their energy output may be on the order of thousands to millions of times our current planetary output. Mark Twain once said, "Everyone complains about the weather, but no one does anything about it." This may change with a Type I civilization, which has enough energy to modify the weather. They also have enough energy to alter the course of earthquakes, volcanoes, and build cities on their oceans. (Kaku, 2004)
We are between Type 0.3 and Type 0.8.Physicist Freeman Dyson of the Institute for Advanced Study estimates that, within 200 years or so, we should attain Type I status. In fact, growing at a modest rate of 1% per year, Kardashev estimated that it would take only 3,200 years to reach Type II status, and 5,800 years to reach Type III status.
Currently, our energy output qualifies us for Type 0 status. We derive our energy not from harnessing global forces, but by burning dead plants (e.g. oil and coal). But already, we can see the seeds of a Type I civilization. We see the beginning of a planetary language (English), a planetary communication system (the Internet), a planetary economy (the forging of the European Union), and even the beginnings of a planetary culture (via mass media, TV, rock music, and Hollywood films).
By definition, an advanced civilization must grow faster than the frequency of life-threatening catastrophes. Since large meteor and comet impacts take place once every few thousand years, a Type I civilization must master space travel to deflect space debris within that time frame, which should not be much of a problem. Ice ages may take place on a time scale of tens of thousands of years, so a Type I civilization must learn to modify the weather within that time frame. (Astrobiology Magazine, April 2004)
Look how far we have come in energy uses once we figured out how to manipulate energy, how to get fossil fuels really going, and how to create electrical power from hydropower, and so forth; we've come up in energy uses in a remarkable amount in just a couple of centuries compared to billions of years our planet has been here ... and this same sort of thing may apply to other civilizations. (Goldsmith)
Planck's constant is a fundamental physical constant that relates the energy of a single quantum (or packet) of electromagnetic radiation to its frequency. It is represented by the symbol h and has a value of approximately 6.626 x 10^-34 joule seconds.
Planck's constant is important because it allows us to understand the behavior of matter and energy at the atomic and subatomic levels. It is a crucial component in many fundamental equations in quantum mechanics and helps to explain phenomena such as blackbody radiation and the photoelectric effect.
Temperature and Planck's constant are related through the Planck distribution law, which describes the distribution of energy among different wavelengths of electromagnetic radiation at a given temperature. As temperature increases, the average energy of each quantum (represented by Planck's constant) also increases.
Max Planck is credited with discovering Planck's constant and developing the quantum theory, which explains the behavior of energy and matter at the atomic and subatomic levels. Through his work on blackbody radiation, he was able to derive the Planck distribution law and provide a better understanding of the relationship between temperature and Planck's constant.
Planck's constant is typically measured using experimental techniques such as the photoelectric effect or Compton scattering. These experiments involve shining light (or other forms of electromagnetic radiation) on a metal surface and measuring the energy of the ejected electrons. By analyzing the relationship between the frequency of the incident light and the energy of the ejected electrons, Planck's constant can be determined.