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Fine-Structure Constant

Definition - What does Fine-Structure Constant mean?

The fine-structure constant is a part of quantum and traditional physics, a constant that represents the strength of electromagnetic forces controlling the behavior of charged particles. It is made up of the following components:

  • Elementary charge
  • Free space
  • Planck's constant
  • Speed of light

The fine-structure constant is also known as Sommerfeld's constant.

Techopedia explains Fine-Structure Constant

As a physics concept, fine-structure constant is mostly confined to in-depth engineering principles, and more related to quantum science than computer science. However, there is some overlap, notably, in the field of nanotechnology, where the controlling of charged particles is a core concept, and in advances such as solid-state technology, where controlling charged particles across a layer or substrate is an essential part of design.

A scientific brief on the issue from 2011 notes that “the existence of the universal dynamic conductance and the quantized optical transparency of graphene observable at room temperature attracted a lot of interest from researchers in different fields, such as optics, solid state physics and electronics.” The piece talks about fine-structure constant in plasmonic nanoarrays, which is one modern application of this type of physics.

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