What Is the Relationship Between Physics and Technology?

Bob Mical/CC-BY 2.0

Physics and technology are mutually stimulated by each other; the discovery of concepts in physics is driven by technical problems, and the advancements in physics gives rise to new technical problems that weren’t previously considered. Industries themselves are composed of various sections of physics applied on a grand scale. Also, fundamental problems in physics lose their importance when the technical problem behind them is no longer important.

The scientific concept of thermodynamics, including phase changes and states of matter, was influenced by the technical needs of metallurgy, which is the working of metals such as steel and other alloys. Faraday’s discovery of magnetic induction led to the technological development of electric motors and generators.

Maxwell and Hertz’s work with electromagnetic waves led to the creation of wireless technology. This development of wireless technology stimulated the scientific interest in spark discharge and electrical emission. Wireless technology also led to the refinement of the theory of atoms and the development of a new theory on the states of metals.

Some physical concepts are no longer pursued due to the advancements in other technologies. This occurred to the concept of generating electricity by friction, which was dropped due to the invention of the galvanic cells. Galvanic cells themselves stopped being researched with the invention of generators.