A specific reference frame that describes its coordinates in a manner that does not depend on time and is isotropic.

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Physical laws in all inertial frames

Do there exist physical laws which do not take the same form in all inertial frames?
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Drift Speed and Current in Two Different Inertial Frames

We have a long, cylindrical wire carrying a constant current I in an inertial frame. At a distance of R from the center of the wire, the magnitude of magnetic field is $μI/2πR$. What is the magnitude ...
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Moment of inertia of rotating particles in center of mass frame?

I am trying to simulate a collision between two molecules. I know the energy for every position/orientation, from which I can calculate the forces. The treatment is classical and the molecules are ...
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Why do we say that the earth moves around the sun?

In history we are taught that the Catholic Church was wrong, because the Sun does not move around the Earth, instead the Earth moves around the Sun. But then in physics we learn that movement is ...
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Invariance of Temperature in Classical Physics

How can we explain that Temperature is a classically frame-independent quantity to high school kids?
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Is acceleration relative?

A while back in my Dynamics & Relativity lectures my lecturer mentioned that an object need not be accelerating relative to anything - he said it makes sense for an object to just be accelerating. ...
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Understanding the “$\pi$” of a rotating disk

Let us say you are in an inertial reference frame with a circular planar disk. If you take your meter measuring rods (or perhaps tape measure) you can find the diameter and circumference of the disk. ...
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Why is Newton's first law necessary?

Newton's second law says $F=ma$. Now if we put $F=0$ we get $a=0$ which is Newton's first law. So why do we need Newton's first law ? Before asking I did some searching and I got this: Newtons first ...
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Gravity vs inertia

As stated according to Newton laws of gravity, every object with mass attracts all other object with a force which produces acceleration. Basically there are several forces in the universe which ...
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What are the mechanics by which Time Dilation and Length Contraction occur?

What are the mechanics of time dilation and length contraction? Going beyond the mathematical equations involving light and the "speed limit of the universe", what is observed is merely a phenomenon ...
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Is the assumption that the two reference frames be inertial required in the derivation of transformation equations?

In the derivation of Galilean transformations the only assumption is that the two frames are moving with some uniform relative velocity $u$. Suppose with respect to some inertial frame $O$ the two ...
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Inertial navigation system: am I doing it wrong?

I'm trying to develop an inertial navigation system. I can access data from an accelerometer sensor (acceleration on three axes) and gyroscope sensor (angular velocity on three axes). First of all, ...
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What is the Earth truly rotating about/revolving around?

Earth rotates on its axis and revolves around the sun, the sun revolves around the galaxy, the galaxy is also moving. So Earth's net rotation as observed from a fixed inertial frame consists of all ...
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Determining Ether Drag - Aberration of Starlight

In order to determine the relative motion between the Earth and the ether (the medium through which light supposedly propagated. It has zero density and complete transparency), scientists used the ...
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Inertial Frames of Reference - Inertial vs. Accelerated Frames

According to Robert Resnick's book "Introduction to Special Relativity", a line states the following as the definition of an inertial frame of reference: "We define an inertial system as a frame of ...
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What does a frame of reference mean in terms of manifolds?

Because of my mathematical background, I've been finding it hard to relate the physics-talk I've been reading, with mathematical objects. In (say special) relativity, we have a Lorentzian manifold, ...
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Earth-Centered Inertial (ECI) reference frame as approximate inertial frame of reference

In many practical applications, one can consider the Earth-Centered Inertial (ECI) reference frame approximately as an inertial reference system, though strictly speaking, it is non-inertial. Is ...
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Inertial frame: Sun earth and moon

From the perspective of sun, is the moon orbiting the earth considered a single inertial frame or are moon and earth separate inertial frames? Or am I missing something completely fundamental?
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Rotating reference frames

I'm trying to understand the equations that govern velocity in a rotating reference frame... \begin{equation} v_i = (\frac{dr}{dt})_r + \Omega \times r . \end{equation} I'd like to build a simple ...
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Relative Motion and orbiting planets [duplicate]

if all motion is relative to the frame of reference determined by an observer, why would the view that planet earth revolves around the Sun more correct than the view that the Sun revolved around ...
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The definition of an inertial reference frame in Einstein's relativity

I'm reading Sean Carroll's book on general relativity, and I have a question about the definition of an inertial reference frame. In the first chapter that's dedicated to special relativity, the ...
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Inertial Frames in Special Relativity

According to the postulates of special relativity, all inertial frames are equal in all respects. Then how does it follow from this, that the space is isotropic and homogenous for an inertial frame ...
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Why doesn't any object that doesn't have direct contact in a fast moving vehicle feel G-force or slam behind or ahead when braked or accelerated?

Why doesn't any object that doesn't have direct contact in a fast moving vehicle feel G-force or slam behind or ahead when braked or accelerated? For example when we are in a car (even with all ...
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Do we need inertial frames in Lagrangian mechanics?

Do Euler-Lagrange equations hold only for inertial systems? If yes, where is the point in the variational derivation from Hamilton's principle where we made that restriction? My question arose ...
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Heliocentric Worldview [duplicate]

Isn't the whole historic Discussion of Heliocentric vs. Geocentric Worldview just about a Calculation-Technique. I mean I could also choose my coordinate-center to be in the middle of Earth and setup ...
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Does action really have to be Lorentz-invariant in SR?

From Landau & Lifshitz The Classical Theory Of Fields it is said: To determine the action integral for a free material particle (a particle not under the influence of any external force), we ...
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What is use of inertial frames

In class of Newton's laws of motion, it was explained that Newton's second law is valid only in inertial frames. Teacher give us a example by considering a lift which is going downwards with ...
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Light cones and reference frames

I'd like to know what does it mean exactly to find a reference frame in which two events occur at the same time or in the same space coordinates. As I picture it if we have two events A and B in a (x, ...
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Does the Relativity Principle of Special Relativity imply homogeneity and isotropy of all the reference frames?

In Rindler's book: Relativity, Special, General and Cosmological, is stated on page 40 that the Relativity Principle (RP), when applied to just one Inertial Frame (IF), guarantees the homogeneity and ...
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Do bullet/gun physics change if the gun is traveling very fast?

If I'm running at say $400\: \mathrm{m/s}$ and a bullet travels at $400\: \mathrm{m/s}$ and I fire the gun, will I see the bullet leave the barrel? I either see it stay in the barrel floating ...
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What is the significance of Einsteins postulate on speed of light?

Einstein postulated that the speed of light in free space is the same for all observers, regardless of their motion relative to the light source, where we may think of an observer as an imaginary ...
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Relative speed of objects

This question has been bugging me for a while now. I am not sure this is the correct forum to ask, please close if it is not the right forum. Lets say a bus is traveling at $60\: \mathrm{km/h}$ and ...
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Is there any true inertial reference frame in the universe?

Is there any true inertial reference frame in the universe? Newton's first law states that an object at rest remains at rest, and an object performing uniform motion performs uniform motion, until ...
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Is General Relativity applicable for all coordinate systems?

My understanding was that relativistic physics can be expressed in any inertial coordinate system, but not arbitrary systems. That is, no experiment can determine if we are "still" or "moving" at a ...
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Second law of Newton for variable mass systems

Frequently I see the expression $$F = \frac{dp}{dt} = \frac{d}{dt}(mv) = \frac{dm}{dt}v + ma,$$ which can be applied to variable mass systems. But I'm wondering if this derivation is correct, ...
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How are fictitious forces related to my feeling?

This question arises when I am studying fictitious forces in an undergrad introduction to physics course. Suppose I am standing in an elevator with an acceleration $a$ directed upward. From the ...
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How does Newton's first law asserts the existence of inertial frames? [duplicate]

Recently I've seem here one answer telling that Newton's first law really assures the existence of inertial reference frames. But how is that? I really can't see it. As I know, Newton's first law ...
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pendulum is a inertial frame of reference or non inertial frame of reference? [closed]

Example of pendulum is inertial frame of reference or non inertial frame of reference? because if pendulum starts moving its continuously moves without changing there period of time but is changes its ...
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Fourier rate equation valid in which frame of reference?

I wonder about the following; the Fourier rate equation of heat conduction states: $$\vec q = -k\nabla T$$ But I'm wondering if this is valid in every frame of reference, because the heat flux $\vec ...
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In what subfields and how far can the naive limit $c\rightarrow\infty$ of special relativity be carried?

Even if many interesting similarities between the classical and the quantum mechanical framework have been worked out, e.g. in the subject of deformation quantization, in general, there are some ...
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Flying a toy helicopter inside an accelerating train [duplicate]

Scenario: You ride in a train, you have this helicopter toy. The train is not yet running when you flew your helicopter on a constant altitude (say 1 meter above the train's floor). Question: What ...
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The definition of Lorentz transformation

I know that the Lorentz transformation, when two frames $\mathcal{S}$ and $\mathcal{S}'$ are in standard configuration (the axes are all parallel to their counterparts in the other inertial frame) is ...
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From the Poincare group to Minkowski space

In special relativity one assume that spacetime can be locally described by 4 coordinates, so it makes sense to model it as a 4-dimensional manifold. I had the impression that it is assumed that ...
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Is Mach's Principle Wrong?

This question was prompted by another question about a paper by Woodward (not mine). IMO Mach's principle is very problematic (?wrong) thinking. Mach was obviously influenced by Leibniz. Empty space ...
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Lorentz Transformation

I have specific questions about Lorentz transformations specifically about length contraction. Why does length contraction only occur in the direction of travel, (not in all directions) when ...
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What determines which frames are inertial frames?

I understand that you can (in principle) measure whether "free particles" (no forces) experience accelerations in order to tell whether a frame is inertial. But fundamentally, what determines which ...
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Newton's First Law of Motion; Empirical Aspects

Newton's first law states that in an inertial frame, a body at rest continues to be at rest, and a body in constant rectilinear motion continues its motion, unless an external force is applied upon ...
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A physical sense of an Inertial frame

Definition clarification needed, please: I am hoping to get physical sense of an "inertial frame". Do inertial reference frames all have zero curvature for their spacetime? So is an inertial frame ...
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Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB) and its relation to Inertial Frames

We know that the CMB is isotropic when viewed outside of the spinning and revolving earth. Is it homogeneous? Can we relate the CMB to an inertial frame in the Newtonian sense (in which space and ...
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Inertial frames of reference

I'm struggling with the notion of an inertial frame of reference. I suspect my difficulty lies with the difference between Newtonian and relativistic inertial frames, but I can't see it. I've read ...