Physical Constants in Extra-Galactic Nebulæ


RECENT wave-length measurements by R. Minkowski and O. C. Wilson1 of spectral lines of H, N II, O I, O II, Ne III and Ne V for the colliding galaxies identified with the radio source Cygnus A permit comparison of galaxy values of physical constants with local values. In particular, radio measures by A. E. Lilley and E. F. McClain2, in combination with the optical measures, permit estimates on the ratio of galactic to local values of the fine structure constant, α, and the proton gyromagnetic ratio, g. The observed system is estimated to be 3 × 108 light years from us on the Humason, Mayall, Sandage scale3.

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  1. 1

    Minkowski, R., and Wilson, O. C., Astrophys. J., 123, 373 (1956).

  2. 2

    Lilley, A. E., and McClain, E. F., Astrophys. J., 123, 172 (1956).

  3. 3

    Humason, M., Mayall, N. U., and Sandage, A. R., Astro. J., 61, 93 (1956).

  4. 4

    Condon, E. U., and Shortley, G. H., “The Theory of Atomic Spectra” (Camb. Univ. Press, 1951).

  5. 5

    Bethe, H., “Handbuch der Physik”, 24/1, Chap. 3, 385 ff. (1933).

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