Science: Squeezing & Shearing

If three 240-ton locomotives were piled one on top of the other and their combined weight rested on a postage stamp, the resultant pressure would be some 1,440,000 lb. per sq. in. Such a pressure, Harvard University announced last week, has been produced in its physics laboratories by stocky, soft-spoken Percy Williams Bridgman and maintained for 15 hours on a speck of graphite as big as a pinhead.

That was a special experiment. For routine high-pressure work Dr. Bridgman uses about half the maximum, working up to 720,000 lb. and then down...

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