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The New Quantum Universe, Second Edition by Patrick Walters, Tony Hey

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10 Death of a star

One of the most impressive discoveries was the origin of the energy of the stars, that makes them continue to burn. One of the men who discovered this was out with his girl friend the night after he realized that nuclear reactions must be going on in the stars in order to make them shine. She said, ‘Look at how pretty the stars shine!’ He said, ‘Yes, and right now I am the only man in the world who knows why they shine’. She merely laughed at him. She was not impressed with being out with the only man who, at that moment, knew why the stars shine. Well it is sad to be alone, but that is the way of the world.

Richard Feynman

A failed star

In the previous chapter we have seen how quantum mechanics and the exclusion principle provide ...

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