My chum Jeff showed me this presentation about creating very short gamma-ray pulses which has quite an interesting ‘time scale’ showing the time that small scale processes take.
It also talks about creating yoctosecond gamma-ray pulses.
Folks may know, light travels at 300,000Km/second, or 3×10^8 m/second (10^8 is supposed to be 10 raised to the power 8 or 100000000)
A hydrogen atom is about 1.1 Ångstrom in diameter, 1.1×10^-10m (10 raised to the power -10, or 0.0000000001)
So, light travels the diameter of a hydrogen atom in 3.6×10^-19 seconds, 0.36 attoseconds (10^-18), or 360 zeptseconds (10^-21 seconds)
A yoctosecond is 10^-24, so light would travel 1/360,000 of a hydrogen atom diameter. Hydrogen atoms are small. Even thinking about the time it takes light to streak cross one is amazing, but a yoctosecond is a tiny time.
If I were going to drive for the next 4 and a bit days, 100 hours, to go between, say, London and San Francisco (on an imaginary road:-), at about 54 miles per hour, that is the first second of the journey.
I find that utterly mind boggling.