Thursday, 9 April 2009

The boring world of Niels Bohr

The title of this post is courtesy of a Simpsons episode where, to Homer's disappointment, the TV show "When dinosaurs get drunk" is replaced by "The boring world of Niels Bohr". Bohr's world, however, was anything but boring. He fled the Nazis from Denmark in a fishing boat during the rescue of the Danish Jews, and later worked on the Manhattan project to develop the first nuclear bomb. In earlier days, Bohr played football for a top Danish side (his brother played for the Denmark national team).

All this is to precede an addendum to my previous post about Bohr atoms: I neglected to consider interactions of Rydberg atoms with low frequency black-body radiation, which should cause stimulated transitions to nearby Rydberg states, thus decohering the quantum state; this could possibly be the principle cause of the classical type radiation. 

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