Physical foundations of quantum theory. (1980)

Documentary №52100, 3 parts, duration: 0:27:18
Production: Centrnauchfilm (CNF)
Director:Vladimir Kobrin
Camera operators:S.Bogdanov, Valerij Ivanov, Mihail Kamionskij
Other authors:konsuljtant: V.D.Verner, Zvukooperator: L.Shutova, redaktor S.Shtirkova


The film is an attempt to modeling the basic concepts of quantum theory. Describes the history of the discovery of quantum mechanics describes the quantum hypothesis of Max Planck model Thomson atom, the Schrödinger equation, etc.

Reel №1

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Roulette against the background of nature.

A cartoon showing a pistol shot.

A device with which moving images are created from static images.

A cartoon depicting the movements of a horse.

Movie camera.

Planet Earth.

Chronicle of 1920.

Hot air balloon flight.

Reverse shooting.

Collision of steam locomotives.

A monkey with a cigarette.

Cartoon frames where the real picture is perceived differently than it was taken.

33 elementary particles of language.

Cartoon, a pistol shot from the elements of the language forms the word horse.

Zodiac signs.

Telephone and other frames.

Science is an attempt to bring the chaotic diversity of our sensory experience into line with a single system of thinking.

Quote from Einstein.

As children, we hardly write the letters of the alphabet of the universe.

Without letters, it is impossible to construct even the simplest concept.

Quantum theory through the eyes of cinema.

A surgical instrument.

On December 14, 1900, the quantum era in natural science opened.

Max Planck's theory is a portion of the energy of a continuous process of emitting light waves.

Cartoon footage in which a piano named M.PLANK plays the melody of a Moonlight Sonata.

Between the two images of the Earth there is a stream of abstract particles.

A stylized eye in a man's hand.

The drawing is a portrait of Newton.


Combined shooting of a clock on a birch tree.

Repetition of frames from the beginning of the movie.

By the end of the XIX century, some theories began to raise questions, for example, the radiation and absorption of light by heated bodies.

According to the theory of classical physics, the cavity of an absolutely black body is filled with waves of different oscillation frequencies.

The Rayleigh-Jeans formula.

Each standing wave is assigned an energy proportional to the absolute temperature.

The spectrum of color on the background of the coordinate system.

As the wavelength decreases, the energy density of the equilibrium radiation should grow indefinitely.

Planck's new law on blackbody radiation.

Based on the ideas about the discrete nature of radiation, he assumed that the energy of the quanta is proportional to the frequency.

The concept of the Planck constant.

Key words

Quantum physics; Quantum mechanics


Maks Plank, uchenij fizik. Isaak Njyuton, uchenij fizik.

Calendar: 1920

Reel №2

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Planck's constant as a symbol of the transition from the laws of classical physics to quantum laws.

Cartoon, balls hitting each other.

Clocks, clock gears.

The pendulum.


Chronicle of 1920.

Stopwatch on the background of the dial.

Photo of Albert Einstein.

Another problem unsolved from the standpoint of classical physics was the regularities of the photoelectric effect.

In 1905, Einstein applied the quantum hypothesis to explain the phenomenon of the photoelectric effect.

Alternating frames that are constantly repeated in the film.

Einstein said we should assume that homogeneous light consists of grains of energy of light quanta rushing through space at the speed of light.

Shots of a galloping horse.

Later these particles will be called photons.

Einstein's equation.

The rest mass of the photon is 0.

According to quantum concepts, the energy of a photon is spent on communicating kinetic energy to a knocked-out electron, and the greater the frequency of light.

Photo of Albert Einstein.

Scheme of Milliken's experiment on knocking out an electron with X-rays.

According to the classical theory, electromagnetic waves could rock and tear out an electron in a few seconds.

The experiment registered the current in one two-thousandth of a second.

Interference, diffraction and polarization proved the wave nature of light.

Most physicists believed that photons are not a physical reality, but only a successful way to describe the emission and absorption of light.

In 1923, Compton discovered that scattered X-rays, along with radiation of the original wavelength, contain waves with a longer length.

Their intensity depends on the scattering angle.

To explain this effect, we had to consider scattering as an elastic collision of balls.

It was necessary to attribute to the photon not only a quantum of energy, but also an impulse proportional to the wave vector.

Photo of English physicists, left J.



The Thomson atom model.

The other physicist in the photo is Ernest Rutherford.

Studying the scattering of alpha particles, he discovered the atomic nucleus.

The planetary model of the atom was reliably substantiated by classical mechanics.

According to classical thermodynamics, a rotating electron should fall on the nucleus in the order of a few nanoseconds.

Niels Bohr was able to explain the regularities of the hydrogen spectrum and the stability of the atom from a single position.

Bohr accepted that there are stationary orbits, being in which the electron does not emit.

The frames from the beginning of the movie are repeated.

Photo by Niels Bohr.

The transition from orbit to orbit is accompanied by the emission or absorption of a photon.

Frames illustrating this fact.

Panorama of the room on a summer day.

By 1923, the number of phenomena that could not be explained by classical theory had become catastrophically large.

Photo of the French physicist Louis de Broglie.

The scientist came to the idea that it is necessary to combine the point of view of the corpuscular theory with the wave theory.

The de Broglie hypothesis.

His hypothesis was that the motion of microparticles has a wave nature.

Stationary Bohr orbits are orbits on which an integer number of waves fit.

The waves, which Einstein called ghost waves, obeyed new differential equations.

Erwin Schrodinger has found a mathematical formulation of the behavior of a quantum system in time and space.

Werner Heisenberg developed quantum theory by formulating its central idea.

The uncertainty principle.

View of the summer room from the clock.

Key words

Quantum physics; Quantum mechanics.


Aljbert Ejnshtejn, fizik. Robert Milliken, fizik. Artur Holli Kompton, fizik. Dzh.Dzh.Tomson, fizik. Ernest Rezerford, fizik. Niljs Bor, fizik. Lui de Brojlj, fizik. Ervin Shredinger, fizik. Verner Gejzenberg, fizik.

Calendar: 1920

Reel №3

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Trees, balloons.

Looking at the stars, we do not affect their movement in any way, rather the light coming from the stars has an effect on the retina of our eye.

Stylized drawing of the eye and the scheme of the passage of light.


In the microcosm, the observation factor is not harmless.

With the help of an electron microscope, we penetrate deeper into the microcosm and influence the object even more actively.

When observing atomic objects, this observation is critically large.

To observe means to introduce violations.

As a consequence, it is impossible to measure the coordinates of a micro-object and its momentum with simultaneous accuracy.

It is possible to construct a cinematic analogue of this principle.

A movie camera that shoots at a speed that compresses time three hundred times.

The subject is a moving flashlight.

It is difficult to make a conclusion from the frames about which way the flashlight is moving and at what speed.

The formulation of the uncertainty principle meant a complete break with classical physics.

Portrait of Erwin Schrodinger.

He proposed an equation to calculate the probability of finding an electron in an atom.


A picture of a moving vintage car.

Images of quantum mechanics often do not lend themselves to visual interpretation.

Drawing of tree roots.

A movie camera that shoots at a speed that compresses time three hundred times.

Let's imagine that there is a place in the universe where time flows slower than our earthly one.

An image taken at a low shooting speed.

Accelerated shooting.

By shooting random phases of the horse's running, the movie camera will record a strange picture.

It will take effort to discover the harmony of movement in the chaos of random figures.

Planet Earth.

A model can never be an exact copy of reality, it reflects only the main aspects of the observed phenomenon.

A repetition of the first frames of this film.

Alternating photos of all the famous physicists mentioned in this film.

Chronicle of 1950.

Einstein is in his office.

Key words

Observation of the microcosm.
Quantum physics.
Quantum mechanics.


Aljbert Ejnshtejn, fizik. Robert Milliken, fizik. Artur Holli Kompton, fizik. Dzh.Dzh.Tomson, fizik. Ernest Rezerford, fizik. Niljs Bor, fizik. Lui de Brojlj, fizik. Ervin Shredinger, fizik. Verner Gejzenberg, fizik.

Calendar: 1950

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