If you’ve been waiting for another in-depth blog post from me on physics and the history of science, wait no longer — just don’t look for it here!
I’ve written a post for the Scientific American Guest Blog that went up this morning, titled “Paris: City of Light and Cosmic Rays”. It describes a little-known set of experiments that were performed at the top of the Eiffel Tower on radioactivity in 1910, experiments that provided the first evidence for radiation coming from outer space — cosmic rays! Weaved into the narrative is a little bit of the history of the Eiffel Tower itself, and an explanation of why experiments such as this one were important for the tower’s survival.
As a bonus, if you’re curious to read the original paper describing the experiments, I attach my English translation of the original German paper here. The translation was done using Google translate and Babelfish, with revisions by myself to fix the clunky English.
Let me know what you think of the SciAm article, either here or there! Thanks again to Bora Zivkovic for letting me write for the guest blog!