The journey of Gravity

  • Posted by Oem Trivedi
  • February 3, 2015 4:22 AM PST

Gravity is a concept of very much interest for everyone . Well , without it how could have we made iron man , superman and different superheroes and stuff like that who have flying skills famous ? Well if gravity was not there everyone would have been flying . Well gravity seems so common to all of us in today's world but it has had a tricky journey throughout . Sometimes not being noticed , sometimes not able to prove itself and also having an identity crisis ! Well we should just rewind its history . Back in earlier times , not much just 2000 years ago people read the words of Aristotle and someone asked him once that why does celetial objects , suns , planets , stars etc. revolve around the Earth ? ( the fact that people earlier believed the ptolemic view that Earth is in the Centre of the universe ) and the great philosopher famously answered that they yearn to be united with the the Earth , they love Earth or more easily they are attracted towards the Earth . That was when the first time , although indirectly the attraction force was  highlighted by someone . These ideas held sway for almost 2000 years after until the beginning of modern physics with Galileo and Newton . Well , Newton was born in 1642 in Woolsthorpe , England . He was born in a poor famer's family . His early life , infact  most of his life was very hard . His father  died three months before he was born  . His mother remarried and his step father was very cruel on him . Infact , as revealed by some accounts Newton as a child wanted to burn his mother's and step father's house over them . Newton was admitted to Trinity college in 1661 but had to leave due to great plague in 1665 and had to get back to his home in woolsthorpe and it is said that in this year itself the incident of apple falling on him had happened . This ( if happened in reality although not clearly acclaimed as true ) led him to think and ask the key question - " If apples fall , does the moon also fall ? " and he realized yes the moon also fall , the moon is in free fall towards the Earth . So , why does the moon  not fall on the Earth , its explained by his calculus . What's calculus ? as Newton realized gravity he had immediately tried to work out the mahtematics but he came to understand that the mathematics of his age were incapable of describing the motion of a falling apple , moon or whatever . So what did Isaac Newton do ? at the age of 23 not only did he stumbled upon gravity but also he invented calculus . Why he basically invented calculus ? because he came to know that while falling the apple was continously accelerating  and he was not able to deal with increasing velocity . But calculus enraged a debate because as we today have came to know that Newton invented calculus before anyone but Newton had a habit of not making his work public . So , when Newton published his work around that time a German philosopher Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz also had published work on calculus . So the debate was who invented it first ? People supported both the contenders but Leibniz made a mistake of appealing to the royal society and Newton as president setup a impartial commitee which eventually gave a report in favour of Newton .  It seems that ancient Indians knew about gravity before Newton , Ancient Indian mathematician Bhaskaracharya, in his book Siddhanta Shriromani, had defined laws of gravity in 12th century, 500 years before Newton defined them for us. Newton died in 1727 and nearly 152 years after him  a man was born in Germany who had a key question , What causes Gravity ? That man became a clerk in a patent office in Burn , Switzerland  and in 1905 , which is quoted as that man's miracle year wrote some amazing physics papers about light , mass and relativeness . Those as we today know as special theory of relativity , Energy - Mass Equivalence and the most loved and affectionated physics equation of all , E=MC2 . Now you know it he was , Albert Herman Einstein .  These would have been a guaranteed phenomenol career for anyone who wants to become a physicist but our good old freind Einstein was  far from finshed . He then returned back to his childhood wonder of what caused gravity ? For the next ten years he worked hardly to find and there you had , The General Theory of Relativity . He created 16 equations describing gravity on large scale structures and describing his great insight of gravity that it was caused by the bending of space - time . Bending of what ? Consider a trampolin and imagine a fat man sitting on it he will obviously bend that trampolin and just roll a marble ball on the trampolin and you will see that the marble ball will be going thhe trampolin is bent by the fat man . This is how space time is bended . And the example taken above describes best our solar system . The fat man is our sun and the marble ball is Earth where we the intelligent life is . Massive bodies like stars bend space - time and anything around that bent space revolves around the massive thing as if being pulled by a force  His 16 equations were later reduced to ten and as we know it today they the Einstein Field Equations. This is the story of our favorite freind Gravity