Mass - What makes something have it?

  • Thread starter FeDeX_LaTeX
  • Start date
  • Tags
    Mass
In summary, the conversation discusses the concept of mass and its relationship to energy. It is mentioned that mass can be converted into energy and vice versa, and that something with energy may not necessarily have effective mass. The topic of photons and their lack of mass is also touched upon, with the potential role of the Higgs field in this phenomenon. The conversation also briefly mentions the hypothetical graviton and its potential connection to gravity.
  • #1

FeDeX_LaTeX

Gold Member
437
13
Hello;

What is mass? For example, a photon has no mass, because it does not react with the Higgs field (is this the only reason)? Why does mass exist?

Thanks.
 
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
Mass can be converted into energy and visa versa. So there is a clue here. I suppose you just need to answer the question 'What is the difference between matter and energy?'
 
  • #3
So if something has energy it has mass, by E=mc^2, right? Okay...
 
  • #4
FeDeX_LaTeX said:
So if something has energy it has mass, by E=mc^2, right? Okay...

No not entirely true. Something can have energy but no 'effective' mass , photons for example (some of the time). To have mass the energy equivalence has to have either an element of spin (matter) or an acceleration/deceleration. Don't quote me on that but that's how I see it.
 
  • #5
So does a photon have no mass because it does not interact with the Higgs field?

Is that the same with the hypothetical graviton too?
 
  • #6
FeDeX_LaTeX said:
So does a photon have no mass because it does not interact with the Higgs field?

Is that the same with the hypothetical graviton too?

I'm not totally sure, but assuming the Higgs field is real I would say that it must interact with it. It gives then takes away with the net result of zero - it's an oscillation thing :smile:.

In so far that the hypothetical graviton will have anything to do with gravity , more than any other virtual particle, is remote. Disclaimer : here again, please don't take my word for it, I think all this a bit on the edge of current knowlege.
 

1. What is mass?

Mass is a measure of the amount of matter in an object. It is a property that determines the strength of the gravitational attraction between two objects and is often measured in kilograms (kg).

2. How is mass different from weight?

Mass and weight are often used interchangeably, but they are actually different concepts. Mass is a measure of the amount of matter in an object, while weight is a measure of the force of gravity on an object. Mass is constant, but weight can vary depending on the strength of the gravitational field.

3. What gives an object mass?

The mass of an object is determined by the number and type of particles it contains. For example, a larger number of atoms or molecules will result in a greater mass. The type of particles also plays a role, as some particles are more massive than others.

4. How is mass measured?

The most common unit of measurement for mass is kilograms (kg). Mass can be measured using a balance scale, where the weight of an object is compared to a known weight, or by using instruments such as a spring scale or electronic balance.

5. Can mass be changed?

Mass is a fundamental property of matter and cannot be changed. While the amount of matter in an object can change through physical or chemical processes, the mass remains the same. This is known as the law of conservation of mass.

Suggested for: Mass - What makes something have it?

Replies
2
Views
2K
Replies
5
Views
2K
Replies
4
Views
2K
Replies
27
Views
1K
Replies
11
Views
2K
Replies
3
Views
1K
Replies
6
Views
9K
Back
Top