Sie sind hier: FRIAS Veranstaltungen Staudinger Lectures Nov 23, 2010: Nobel Laureate …

7. Hermann Staudinger Lecture mit Nobelpreisträger Anthony Legget


Why can't time run backwards?

Nobel Laureate Anthony Leggett
Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

"Why can't time run backwards?" // Podcast available
Wann 23.11.2010
von 17:15 bis 18:15
Wo Universität Freiburg, KG I, Aula
Kontakttelefon +49(0)761 203-97407
Termin übernehmen vCal

Why can't time run backwards?

We can all tell when a movie of some everyday event, such as a kettle boiling or a glass shattering, is run backwards. Similarly, we all feel that we can remember the past and affect the future, not vice versa. So there is a very clear "arrow" (direction) of time built into our interpretation of our everyday experience. Yet the fundamental microscopic laws of physics, be they classical or quantum-mechanical, look exactly the same if the direction of time is reversed.
So what is the origin of the "arrow" of time? This is one of the deepest questions in physics. Anthony Leggett will review some relevant considerations, but he does not pretend to give a complete answer.

Further Information:


Video download Full HD (1080p) | Video download HD (720p) | Audio download (mp3)

Picture Gallery:

please click on the picture below

staudinger 7 leggett picture gallery link

Report on the 7th Hermann Staudinger Lecture with Sir Anthony Leggett
Nobel Laureate Sir Anthony Leggett is widely recognized as a world leader in the theory of low-temperature physics, and his pioneering work on superfluidity was recognized with the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2003. He has shaped the theoretical understanding of normal and superfluid helium liquids and strongly coupled superfluids. He set directions for research in the quantum physics of macroscopic dissipative systems and use of condensed systems to test the foundations of quantum mechanics.
'Why can't time run backwards' was the question that Sir Antony Leggett addressed in his Hermann Staudinger Lecture at FRIAS on November 23rd, 2010.
On crossing the Atlantic for a two-day visit to Freiburg, the man who had unravelled many mysteries of frictionless dynamics in cold quantum systems, squeezed in more events than just the lecture.
On Monday November 22nd he met with physics and philosophy students to answer their questions about the nature of time, followed by a Colloquium in the Physics Institute on the question of quantum coherence in macroscopic objects.
Whereas most people probably never wonder why we can remember the past and not the future, or why we can influence the future (or at least believe so) and not the past, Sir Anthony Leggett explained why indeed we should be very surprised about this; indeed the fundamental theories in physics, such as Newtonian mechanics, Maxwell's theory of electrodynamics or quantum mechanics, do not give any preference to a specific direction of time.
Nevertheless, there is an abundance of 'arrows of time' in nature: plants grow, but never evolve back to a seed, stars emit light, but hardly absorb any, entropy increases and the universe expands and does not contract; but no explanation of this striking asymmetry is really convincing. It just seems that our conception of the nature of time is much less evolved than that of most other facets in physics.
Often, a revolutionary discovery was necessary for us to question and revise assumptions that seemed so natural to us: only special relativity taught us that our idea of simultaneity was rather naïve, and before the formulation of quantum mechanics it seemed so natural to assume that we can observe nature without modifying the objects that we are looking at.
Perhaps we will need another revolution to change our perception of time. When this revolution will come and what it might be like, not even Sir Anthony Leggett knows, but that it will come, of this he is sure.
(Florian Mintert)


plakat leggett