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Is time quantum at the microscopic level?

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  1. Dec 18, 2012 #1
    Time has always baffled me. I have two questions for you.
    1. What's the genesis of time?
    2. Is time quantum at the microscopic level?
    Thank you.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 6, 2013
  2. jcsd
  3. Dec 18, 2012 #2

    phinds

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    Re: Time

    Time is discussed here frequently. I suggest a forum search.
     
  4. Dec 18, 2012 #3
    Re: Time

    I did the search. Nothing except my questions and your answer!
    Any takers?
     
  5. Dec 18, 2012 #4

    ghwellsjr

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    Re: Time

    I think your first question belongs on the philosophy forum (if it still exists) and your second question belongs on the QM forum.
     
  6. Dec 18, 2012 #5
    Re: Time

    What the heck is "what is the Genesis of time?" asking? (googled - beginning/origin)
    it would be same as space.




    "Quanta" of time Planck time

    but seriously do a better search for interpretations of time. This is a forum of fact, not so much interpretation.
     
  7. Dec 18, 2012 #6
    Re: Time

    I have already done an extensive search of the literature. Will do so more.
    "Genesis" means origin/beginning/creation/.... as you said.
    So, Planck time is a fact!
    I have come to realize that I am not going to understand gravity without time and its origin.
    Thank you.
     
  8. Dec 18, 2012 #7
    Re: Time

    No it's a theory. Sorry for saying this is a forum for facts, that's a little far fetched. But it is in fact a theory,
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2012
  9. Dec 18, 2012 #8

    Dale

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    "Plank time" is a unit, like "second" or "hour".
     
  10. Dec 18, 2012 #9
    Re: Time

    Is it proved to be the smallest unit of time?
     
  11. Dec 18, 2012 #10

    phinds

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    Re: Time

    No, it is HYPOTHESIZED to be the smallest unit of time. There is no evidence that time is quantized and if it is there is no evidence that the Plank Time is the quanta ... I have heard it stated that the quanta would be MUCH less than the Plank Time, though I have no idea of the validity of that statement.
     
  12. Dec 18, 2012 #11

    Dale

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    Re: Time

    No. I have just invented a new unit, the flubnubitz, which is equal to 1/2 of a Planck time.
     
  13. Dec 18, 2012 #12

    OCR

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  14. Dec 18, 2012 #13
    Re: Time

    SinghRP, thanks for your inquiry. Your probing into the understanding of time at the fundamental level reflects the kind of curiousity and inquisitiveness that has propelled physics throughout its development. You are in good company with the attitude reflected in your posts.

    I wish I could help you understand time. At the fundamental level physicists do not comprehend what accounts for our notion of time--the "passage of time." It's psychological, but also it's something that physicists have been able to account for in some sense as a parameter in their mathematical equations. With the advent of special relativity, time becomes even more mysterious in the way it is incorporated into the space-time concept. This removes us even further from the understanding of time at a fundamental level--although, in a mathematical sense, the space-time theory enhanced the advancement of physics and even gave us a deeper insight into the universe. Many of those aspects would be considered too philosophical for discussion here, although some of these discussions have been given much latitude and flexibility by the forum monitors.

    Some would say that time is a value read on a clock. The problem is that clocks themselves are not time, they are physical objects that occupy space. We can put numbers on the clock and talk about the rate of rotation of the hands of the clock, but that is not time, intrinsically. Yes, physics can calibrate the clock and assign a definitional meaning to the readings on a clock, but that is not the same as providing a fundamental understanding of time.

    I don't think there will be much help for you here, but you might search the topic on amazon.com where you will find books like "About Time", "The Fabric of Time", "The Labyrinth of Time", and "The End of Time." Much of the discussions found in those books are not appropriate for this forum, since the kind of probing you are doing is not found in the formal scientific journals of physics, and much of it is considered speculative by the standards of this forum.

    Kurt Godel (one of the great logicians of mathematics and colleague of Einsteins at Princeton) once presented what he felt was a logical proof that time in physics was invalid. But, his arguments would be considered speculative and philosophical--not appropriate for this type of forum where we emphasize help in understanding physics based on concepts in the main stream, universally accepted concepts with support from peer-reviewed literature. You should particularly avoid discussions here that seem to fall into the philosophical category rather than physics.
     
    Last edited: Dec 18, 2012
  15. Dec 20, 2012 #14
    Re: Time

    When we talk about time we have to be careful with the semantics. And indeed some philosophical and ontological aspects have to be taken into consideration. Even mathematicians have to face these issues in order to understand what the measured / observed numbers stand for.

    As far as relativity is concerned in this forum section it is interesting to notice the difference of time interpretation between Lorentz and Einstein.
    Lorentz had to face the problem that his local time didn't make sense in his own ether theory. It was Einstein who solved that problem by considering his local time as physical real instead of only mathematical fictions. Lorentz admited his 'error': quote
    <<The chief cause of my failure was my clinging to the idea that the variable t only can be considered as the true time and that my local time t' must be regarded as no more than an auxiliary mathematical quantity. In Einstein's theory, on the contrary, t' plays the same part as t; if we want to describe phenomena in terms of x'; y'; z'; t' we must work with these variables exactly as we could do with x; y; z; t.>>
    Einstein made the t' a physical time. This lead to the existence of the physical 4D (block) spacetime.

    Unfortunately I sometimes have the impression that many mathematicians/physicists interpret the issue the other way around: instead of accepting t' as a physical time, they reduce Einstein's t to a mathematical number for not having to deal with any physical interpretation. And hence -to put it bluntly- the 4D Spacetime becomes only a mathematical model to organize mathematical numbers. It then becomes irrelevant to for example deal with the physical significance of the time-coordinate of a space-like event.
    Lorentz Tranformations and time coordinates only really make sense in Einstein's Special Relativity, not in an ether theory (LET). Therefore it is a misconception that both LET theory and SR are equally valid theories because they deal with the same mathematics of the Lorentz Transormations. That's refuting the difference between physics and mathematics.
    Richard Feynman quote: <<... Physics is not mathematics, and mathematics is not physics. One helps the other. But you have to have some understanding of the connection of the words with the real world..>> (at minute 45:42:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=kd0xTfdt6qw )
     
  16. Dec 20, 2012 #15

    Dale

    Staff: Mentor

    Re: Time

    I think you are accidentally mischaracterizing a legitimate definition of time. An operational definition of time would be: "time is the thing measured by a clock". Note that this is different from your definition because it points beyond the clock to the thing that the clock measures, which is defined to be "time". Operational definitions like this are very important since they keep physics definitions from being circular.
     
  17. Dec 20, 2012 #16
    Re: Time

    Is it proved to be the smallest [STRIKE]unit[/STRIKE] bit of time?
     
  18. Dec 20, 2012 #17
    Re: Time

    Many physicists do not realize current mathematics will never lead to the absolute
    truth of nature. Because mathematics lack human factors.
     
  19. Dec 21, 2012 #18

    phinds

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    Re: Time

    Huh? What does that even MEAN ???
     
  20. Dec 21, 2012 #19
    Re: Time

    No,it is not possible to define time operator which has a usual commutation relation with hamiltonian like [T,H]=ih-.this implies no minimum of energy i.e. no ground state.
     
  21. Dec 21, 2012 #20
    Re: Time

    hello all .. if a massless object doesn't have to recognise time as a component of its existence, we seem to be all on a road to nowhere, as the instant our universe went from pure energy (but no mass) to the state where matter formed and expanded (quantum fluctuation/s?) we have to invoke time because of the limitations set out by Einsteins equations and the ''impurity'' that mass brings with it...

    ...we are all looking in the rear view mirror for why physics is what it is...all at the same time having to recognise our conscious needs for answers in an ''impure'' environment....
     
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