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#### 重新定义千克

How We're Redefining the kg

-我应该按什么 负二层吗？-负二层
What do I have to push, sub-basement?>>Woman: Sub-basement.
［蜂鸣安全报警器］
[Buzzing safety alarm]

I’m at the National Institute of Standards & Technology in Washington D.C.

and I’m going to the sub-basement.

It’s getting dark down here.

We’re going to find out how they’re going to redefine a kilogram.

The kilogram is in trouble.
1799年 它被定义为
Since 1799, it’s been defined

as the mass of a metal cylinder,

in a locked vault in a basement in Paris.

But over the last century,

careful measurements of this international prototype kilogram

and in-theory-identical national standardsfrom around the world,

have shown that their masses are diverging.

The spread has grown to around 50 micrograms, or 50 parts per billion.

And having a standard of mass that changes is unacceptable.

Plus, the kilogram is the last

of the base SI units to still be defined by a physical object.

The metre, for example,

used to be defined as the length of a platinum bar in Paris,

but in 1983 it was redefinedas the distance light travels

in 1/299,792,458 of a second.

This definition means that the speed

of light is set to exactly 299,792,458
. 00000… 米每秒
point 00000… et cetera, metres per second.

Note how this works:first, you take the existing definition, say

the length of that metre bar,

and you measure as carefully

as you can how it relates to a physical constant of the universe:

the speed of light.

Then you set the exact value of that constant

and use it to redefine how long a metre is.

I know this might seem circular, but, importantly,

it moves the point of truth

off of the physical object, and onto the unchanging constant of the universe.

So, naturally, the thought is to do the same thing with the kilogram.

But using which constant, and how?
#重型机器噪音#
[Heavy mechanical noises]

Well, there are a number ofdifferent strategies that were attempted

but the two that achievedthe greatest success were:
1 用硅球体确定阿伏伽德罗常数
1) using a silicon sphere to determine and setAvogadro’s number
2 用瓦特天平确定普朗克常数
and 2 ) to use a Watt balance to determine and set Planck’s constant.
-你好 我是德里克-好
-Hi, how ya’ doin’? I’m Derek-Pretty good.

Nice to meet you.

Where is the Watt balance?

The Watt balance isbehind these closed doors, and…

It’s in there?

It’s correct, and right now the problem is that…

We are in a crunch to get a number by the end of May.

What’s the number?

The Planck’s constant.

This is what we measure with the Watt balance.

In 2011, the General Conference on Weights and Measures

decided that the kilogram should be redefined based on Planck’s constant,

but that doesn’t mean thatthe Avogadro approach was futile.

I mean, you can use Avogadro’s number to calculate

Planck’s constant and vice-versa.

So, ultimately, both approachesare going to be used to redefine

One good thing about having silicon spheres,

is that you only want to redefine

if you have agreement between different numbers, right?

And the silicon sphere method is a method

in my mind that comes out of chemistry.

which is a constant that comes out of chemistry.

This method comes out of physics,we measure Planck’s constant.

So if they both agree, it’s a pretty strong sign, right?

Because you know chemistry and physics agree.

discussed the Avogadro approach in a previous video,

here I want to focus on the Watt balance.

It’s actually now called a Kibble balance

in honor of its inventor, Bryan Kibble,

who actually passed away in 2016.

You know, traditional balances work by equating the gravitational forces

on objects in two pans.

The Kibble balance looks kind of similar,

but all of the balancing happens on the left-hand side,

where a mass pan is attached to a coil

of wire in a magnetic field.

On the right-hand side is a motor.

The whole apparatus is sealedand operated in vacuum.

The balance operates in two modes:

Weighing mode and velocity mode,

and both are requiredto determine Planck’s constant.

In weighing mode,

a kilogram mass standard is placed on the mass pan

and then current is passed through the coil

in the magnetic field

of the kilogram is equal and opposite

to the electromagnetic force on the coil.

The equation for this isMass times the local gravitational acceleration

is equal to the Magnetic field,

times the length of wire in the coil, times the current flowing through it

In this equation the variables that are difficult to

measure exactly are the magnetic field strength,

and the length of wire in the coil

But luckily the Kibble balance allows

us to get around this problem using velocity mode

In velocity mode the kilogram mass is lifted off the mass pan

and now the motor on the other side of the balance is used to

move the coil back and forth at constant velocity through the magnetic field.

This motion induces a voltage

in the coil which is equal to the magnetic field,

times the length of wire in the coil, times its velocity.

Now we have two equations which we can

solve for B times L and so we

can set them equal to each other and

eliminate these variables

without having to know precisely what their values are

and if we rearrange a little bit you

get voltage times current equals mass times gravity times velocity.

On the left hand side,

there is electrical power and on the right hand side, mechanical power,

and that’s why this was called the Watt,

the unit of power, balance

But how do you go

from this to Planck’s constant，the number that relates a photon’s frequency to its energy?

Well it turns out there’s actually a way

of measuring voltage accurately using a macroscopic quantum effect that involves Josephson junctions

so a Josephson junction consists

of two superconductors separated by a thin piece of insulator

Now if you apply a microwave radiation to that junction,

you create a voltage across the device

and its value is precisely known to be hf over 2 e.

Where h is Planck’s constant, f is the frequency of the radiation,
e是电子上的电荷
and e is the charge on an electron

Now by tuning that frequency and stacking as many

of these Josephson junctions as you want in series

you can create virtually any voltage you like very very precisely.

The way this is used in the Kibble balance

is a stack of hundreds of thousands of Josephson junctions

are put into the circuit with the coil

as it is moved through the field

and so you exactly balance the voltage which is induced

in the coil using those Josephson junctions

So you can measure that voltage very very accurately.

But how do we measure current?

Well it turns out this voltage measuring method is so good

that instead of trying to measure current directly

we instead measure V on R which is the same thing

So this current is passed through a resistor,

and we measure that voltage again using Josephson junctions

And then to measure resistance we use another

macroscopic quantum effect called the quantum hall effect.

Which is Beyond the scope of this video but,

suffice is to say that the resistance measurement will be an integer fraction, one over p

times Planck’s constant divided by the charge on the Electron squared

So if we sub all of this into our

equation and solve for h, we have that

Planck’s constant is equal to four
4/pn² 这些都是我们知道的常数
over p n squared, those are all constant numbers that we know,

times the local acceleration due to gravity times velocity

divided by frequency squared times the mass which is one kilogram.

So here we have a very precise equation

for Planck’s constant in terms of the mass of one kilogram

Now to get an answer that’s good to say,
1亿分之一
ten parts per billion

You need to know all of these values very accurately

So to measure V for example the velocity

of the coil as it moves through the Magnetic field,

we use a laser interferometer

as the distance to the coil

changes, the interference Fringes pass over a detector

And essentially by counting how many

fringes go past in a certain period of time

you can determine the speed of the coil very accurately

To measure g, a device called a gravimeter was used

to map out the local acceleration due to gravity

in the balance room before it was built in there

The gravimeter actually drops a corner

reflector down a vacuum tube and measures its acceleration

again through interferometry, counting the fringes as they pass

This is a 3D printed map of the acceleration

due to gravity in the Kibble balance room

The bump is due to the mass of the powerful

and very heavy permanent magnet that’s in the balance

The acceleration due to gravity must continually be measured

because it can be affected at this level of precision

By the positions of the sun and moon

and even the water table underneath the building
2018年 千克
In 2018 the kilogram will no

longer be defined by an object in Paris

Instead it will be defined based

on the fixed value of Planck’s constant

which is being finalized right now as a result

of all these measurements from the Kibble balances and silicon spheres

So right now what we do is,

we put the mass in, and we get h out

and in 2018, after redefinition,
H就固定了 你可以用它来求出质量单位
h will be fixed and you use that to realize the unit of mass
-简单-是的 就那么简单
-Easy-Yeah, just that– just that easy.
-就那么简单-简单
-Just that simple.-Simple

Hey, this episode of Veritasium was supported
Patreon上像你这样的观众的支持
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Just go to audible.com/veritasium

You know, recently I’ve been traveling

around the world to Israel, London, Mexico City

And tomorrow I’m off to New Orleans

because I’m shooting stuff for Netflix and

What I’ll be listening to

on the plane is Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels of Our Nature

This is an awesome book that takes a scientific and statistical

approach to the question of when is the best time to be alive

as a human and his answer, is now.

Whether it seems like it or not,

violence and all the terrible things that humans have had to deal with

has been on the decline for centuries and

if you want the

statistical proof for

that you should check out this book it is fantastic

audible. com/veritasium免费下载

Or you can pick any other book

of your choosing for a one-month free trial

So I want to thank audible for supporting me,

and I want to thank you for watching.