A letter handwritten by Albert Einstein containing his E=mc2 equation has sold at an auction in the United States.
The highest bid for the letter was more than $1.2 million (£850,000), three times more than it had been expected. Expert archivists say that there are only three other known examples of the equation in the physicist’s handwriting. The auction house thought had expected it to sell for about $400,000.
In 1095, the equation was first published in the scientific paper by Einstein. Moreover, the equation explains the interchangeability of energy and mass. The equation is a fundamental concept of modern physics and states energy equals mass times the speed of light squared. The equation changed physics by demonstrating that time was absolute, and mass and energy were equivalents.
This was the only example of the equation in a private collection. Moreover, it had only become public recently, said Boston based RR auction, which sold the letter.
It is an essential letter from both physics and holographic point of view, RR auction said in a statement. Adding they called it the most well-known equation ever set forth.
The one-page letter is dated 26 October 1946 and is addressed to Polis American physicist Ludwik Silberstein. Mr Ludwik is known to have challenged some of Einstein’s theories.
Who bought the letter?
According to the Associated Press news agency, the letter was part of Silberstein’s personal archives, which his descendants sold. Moreover, it also reported that the buyer was identified only as an anonymous document collector.
In response to Silberstein’s query translated into English, Einstein’s response read that his question can be answered from the E=mc2 formula without any erudition. Adding, if E is the energy of his system consisting of two masses. E0 the energy of the masses that they approach infinite distance. Then the system’s mass defect is E0 E/ C2, he continued.
The rarity of the letter set off a bidding war, said Bobby Livingston, the executive vice-president of the RR auction. Five parties were bidding aggressively first, but once the price reached around $700,000, it had become a two-party contest.