String Theory

Table of Contents:
  1. Introduction
  2. The String
  3. Different Theories
  4. The Scale of String
  5. The Theory of Everything
  6. Sources
  7. Further Exploration

1. Introduction

String theory is basically the theory that all things are made up of infinitesimally tiny vibrating loops of string. This theory explains that the strings vibrate in different ways according to what kind of particle it is. An electron would cause the strings to vibrate one way and a down quark would cause them to vibrate a different way. Also this theory allows for ten somewhat undetectable dimensions.

2. The String

String Theory states that all the strings are identical and are unimaginably small. Their only difference is its resonance pattern, or how it vibrates. Like the strings on a violin or a guitar, these strings have a resonance when motion is applied. The string's fundamental pattern, or first harmonic, is expressed when the motion applied to it causes it to vibrate at its "natural frequency." Each resonant pattern is a multiple of the fundamental frequency. In this video, leading String Theorist, Brian Greene, explains String Theory in less than two minutes: http://www.butseriously.com/metafiles/video/mStringTheory.ram (if the pop-up blocker pops up, right click on it and click on "download file" to view the video).

3. Different Theories

  • One type of string theory explains how the strings start as being closed and can break into open strings.
  • Another, more commonly used, theory states that the strings cannot break open.
Breakable string
Breakable string
Unbreakable String
Unbreakable String








4. The Scale of String

This website allows us to look into how small these strings actually are... **http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/elegant/scale.html**
If the atom were enlarged to the size of the universe, a string would be a tree on Earth!
The Magnification of Strings
The Magnification of Strings



5. The Theory of Everything


In 1921, the Kaluza-Klien Theory was published, which described the idea of unifying gravity and electromagnetism by adding an extra dimension of space. Many years later in 1968, Gabriele Veneziano began modern string theory with an essay on the dual resonance model of the strong interactions. This theory was not widely accepted at the time. Then in 1973, Joel Scherk and John Schwarz proposed that string theory was a theory of quantum gravity. This idea was still not popular for ten more years. This video goes much more in depth with the discovery of this "Theory of Everything": http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/programs/ht/rv/3013_05.html

Joel Scherk
Joel Scherk
John Schwarz
John Schwarz

















6. Sources

Nova | the elegant universe. (1993-2003). Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/elegant/
Schwarz, P. (n.d.). The Official string theory website. Retrieved from http://www.superstringtheory.com/index.html



7. Further Exploration