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Einstein and the Quantum by A. Douglas Stone

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CHAPTER 24

THE INDIAN COMET

Respected Sir:

I have ventured to send you the accompanying article for your perusal and opinion. I am anxious to know what you think of it. You will see that I have tried to deduce the coefficient 8πυ2/c3 in Planck’s Law independent of the classical electrodynamics, only assuming that the ultimate elementary region in the phase-space has the content h3.

This letter to Einstein from an unknown Indian scientist, received in early June, 1924, initiated one of the most extraordinary episodes in the modern history of science, culminating in Einstein’s final historic contribution to the structure of the new quantum theory. At the time of his writing, Satyendra Nath Bose was a thirty-year-old Reader (roughly equivalent to ...

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