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Leibniz vacuum and Its Modern Value

Author: LinChengTao From: www.yourpaper.net Posted: 2010-06-18 15:37:55 Read:
Abstract: Leibniz inherited Cartesian concept of space and substance-related, and proposed the the vacuum existence of relative time and space against Newton's absolute space, thereby denying on the blank. Leibniz vacuum research in his time did not have much impact, but get rid of the 20th century revolution in physics Newton's absolute space and time provided the ideological resources.
Keywords: Leibniz; vacuum; time and space
Abstract: Leibniz inherited Cartesian concept on the relevance between space and material and put forward relative view of space-time to oppose Newton's absolute view of space-time, so he denied the existence of the vacuum which is nothing. Leibniz's research results on the vacuum did not have much effect in his era, but it provided the resources of thinking to get rid of Newton's absolute space-time in the physics revolution in the 20th century.
Key words: Leibniz; vacuum; view of space-time


Leibniz was living with Kepler, Galileo, Descartes, Pascal, Boyle, Newton and other great masters of the 17th century, historians of science as "the genius of the century" in the same era in the history of science. Leibniz was a great mathematician and philosopher, and is a modern (and perhaps the only one) the encyclopedic scholar par Aristotle. Than the other great masters of his contemporaries in the field of natural science other than the human intellect, more achievements. He was known as the German science, philosophy, the father, still in theology, technological invention, law, history, linguistics, political science, and many other fields have to be called contemporary first-class achievements. A Western scholar has commented: "Leibniz may be the modern world's most comprehensive genius ...... touched almost every branch of modern knowledge, he was the last hope to master all areas of modern knowledge and encyclopedic character of the people. "Perhaps because Leibniz involved in the field of research is too broad and complex, many of his important research value in quite a long time not to be taken seriously, such as vacuum. Although the objective conditions, Leibniz in a vacuum studies rely more on scientific speculation and philosophical speculation, but the conclusion is actually the master of science in 200 years after Einstein, Dirac vacuum The results of the study coincide indeed people have lamented the idea of ??genius.

"Vacuum" historical context

Research and debate on the issue of a vacuum can be traced back to ancient Greece. Democritus atomism believe that the world is made up of atoms and void, vacuum the proposition; Aristotle argued that the universe is full of "ether", and thus the true void does not exist , and his famous quote "Nature abhors a vacuum". It can be said that human Vacuum problem and source of contention, and continues to this day.
However, here it must be pointed out that the concept of vacuum is ambiguous, the so-called "physical vacuum" and "philosophical vacuum (or metaphysics vacuum) of the points, while the" physical vacuum "another" classic vacuum " quantum vacuum "of difference. History vacuum concepts different periods have different emphases, the vacuum the concept of ancient Greece more philosophical sense, biased in favor of the "void", the meaning of "nothingness"; vacuum concept in the 17th century is the "physical vacuum" and "philosophy vacuum both; modern concept of the vacuum is the physical vacuum. Of course, the "physical vacuum" and "philosophical vacuum conceptual distinction is not entirely clear, can not become the basis of the strict distinction between scientific issues and metaphysical questions in the field, vacuum is still (and probably will always be) science, metaphysics entanglement with a frontier.
17th century vacuum research and Descartes have a great relationship. In fact, people always the first views of nature based on their day-to-day experience. The relationship between matter and space is no exception. According to conventional thinking, it was natural to the space imagine a huge, empty house does not move, the material is a piece to move things in this house, so the space must be before the material existence. In this way, empty the vacuum of a thing is possible. This is the so-called concept of absolute space. So imagine the zone between the Earth to the sun is a vacuum. Descartes did not think so. In his view, space and matter can not be separated, the space exists only in the place of certain substances have, is the existence of matter before the space to exist; the empty vacuum does not exist. He said: "In fact, we can not imagine a container on the blank, as can not imagine a mountain in the Valley: This means that no extension will be able to imagine the contents of the container, or no entity can be envisaged extensive : It is true that nothing can Extensa. "As for interstellar Strip, Descartes is not a vacuum, but full of substance, this substance is Ethernet. Descartes deduced from the Ethernet his theory of the universe.
Descartes denied the presence of vacuum doctrine by the strong challenge of Torricelli, Pascal et al. The Torricelli experiment "both of them were doing," vacuum test "people" seeing is believing "to believe that there is a vacuum in the side of the glass tube of the mercury column experiments. Modern atomic theory and Newtonian believe that the existence of the vacuum. Since then, in favor of the the vacuum existence of one faction seems to have prevailed.
The Leibniz "relative time and space" Newton "absolute space" opposition

Leibniz Cartesian denied the vacuum existence of a representative figure of a fierce debate, for which he insist on the presence of vacuum Newtonian. He believes that the vacuum is nothingness. Newtonian Clark had accused Descartes and Leibniz vacuum and nothingness equivalent. Clark believes that no material space is undoubtedly the empty space, but does not mean that space itself is also eliminated. In Clark's view, "if the extension is the nature of the substance, then the substance is equivalent to the space itself; thus can be introduced, the material must be ubiquitous, infinite and eternal, and they can neither be created, can not return to nothingness, this is ridiculous. "In other words, according to the Newtonian, Descartes and Leibniz, the crux of the error lies in the space and matter equivalent.
We know that the, classical mechanics Tower is built on the cornerstone of Newton's absolute space, the Essentials can be summarized as "space-time independent of the substance exists. Leibniz explicitly opposed Newton's absolute space. He wrote: "I put the space as something purely relative, like a time; seen as a co-existence of the order, as the time is a continuation of the same order. Because of the possibility, the space flag with the presence of an order of things, as long as these things exist together without having to involve their special mode of existence; when we see a few things together, we noticed things are of this order. "in Here, Leibniz space as a kind of "co-existence of order"; time as a "continuation of the order". The so-called "co-existence of the order," the continuation of the order, the more popular understanding is a relationship that is Time.
Leibniz, space, time itself is not absolute, such as Newton's theory said, it's existence. Time and space and the materials and their movement are inseparable, leave the material is no space, also left the motion of matter it does not matter the time. Space is not logically prior to and independent of the presence of substances in the container. He considered that the substance logically prior to the existence of the space, and arranged in the form of a space, the space is simply a relationship, except that there is no space exists. Thus Leibniz Newtonian theory of absolute space does not exist, an object can only change its position relative to another object, it can not change its position in the absolute space, because the non-real space, in addition to positional relationship between the object, there is no frame of reference in the absolute sense, and also that there is no so-called absolute space itself. Time as well, in addition to the relationship is between events, it does nothing, absolute time does not exist. As opposed to absolute space and time, Leibniz naturally opposed to the concept of Newton's theory of absolute motion. With his corresponding to the relative concept of space, he believes that movement, but just an object relative to another position of the object changes, Therefore, the movement is not something absolute, it only exists in the relationship. I.e., the kind of the absolute motion relying on the absolute space above the background does not move simply does not exist, any movement of an object must be associated with the movement of other objects. Associated with the above, Leibniz natural deny the presence of the void, because he is against atomism, he thinks space can either be full or empty this concept is unacceptable.

Leibniz vacuum modern value

For the the vacuum existence of camp Torricelli, Pascal's series of scientific experiments, Leibniz tried to deny the vacuum from a more scientific point of view and the "physical vacuum". He noted that the the Torricelli experiment mercury column of square tube in that part would not vacuum, but there is excluded from the coarse material, but still full Narrow substances, light still obtain enter thereinto. Thus, he identified which is not a vacuum, because the light material. Leibniz made a vivid metaphor for this. He said that the container is like a box full pore it into the water, fish and other coarse stuff in the box, remove the thick of things, this box is still full of water. Leibniz in fact here is popular on the Cartesian model of the universe filled with Ethernet. Thus, Leibniz think that empty space is just an imagination.
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