The Science Quiz | Condensed matter physics

Updated - May 22, 2024 12:55 pm IST

Published - May 22, 2024 12:54 pm IST


1. Name the assistant in Humphrey Davy’s lab who, in 1823, liquefied all the gases known at the time excluding hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen. In the post-industrial era, Davy was among the first scientists to deduce atoms were not indivisible by observing the physical properties of matter.

2. In 1900, German physicist ____ _____ tried to explain the path of an electron moving through solid metal. His model was quite imperfect, but it became the basis for early steps in the study of quantum mechanics, especially at the hands of Wolfgang Pauli and Arnold Sommerfeld, among others. Fill in the blanks.

3. In the 1930s, Arnold Sommerfeld used quantum mechanics to solve many open problems at the time in condensed matter physics. However, his model couldn’t explain the _____ effect. In this effect, a metal doped with a magnetic impurity counterintuitively causes the metal’s resistance to increase as it approaches absolute zero. Fill in the blank.

4. In 1980, Gerhard Dorda, Michael Pepper, and X discovered the unusual quantum Hall effect. Here, when a strong magnetic field is applied top-down on a cold, 2D sheet of electrons, an electric resistance arises across the sheet’s breadth. And the resistance value can only increase or decrease in fixed steps. Name X, who was awarded the 1985 physics Nobel Prize for this work.

5. A Bose-Einstein condensate is an exotic state of matter in which quantum phenomena, otherwise invisible to the naked eye, become visible. Name the three physicists who lead two teams in 1995 to produce the world’s first Bose-Einstein condensates in the lab, subsequently sharing a Nobel Prize for the feat.


Name this physicist who made several groundbreaking contributions to condensed-matter and particle physics.


1. Michael Faraday

2. Paul Drude

3. Kondo

4. Klaus von Klitzing

5. Eric Cornell, Carl Wieman, Wolfgang Ketterle

Visual: Philip W. Anderson

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