The special theory of relativity describes the motion and dynamics of objects moving at significant fractions of the speed of light.

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Multiparticle Mandlestam Variables Extension

So in 4D we have three Mandlestam variables for a 4-particle scattering process. This corresponds to $p_i^\mu$ giving us 16 degrees of freedom. Momentum conservation reduces this by 4, and we have 4 ...
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813 views

Do tachyons move faster than light?

I am trying to understand whether or not tachyons travel faster than light. The linked Wikipedia page shows some seemingly contradictory statements, and they are confusing. For instance, the first ...
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659 views

How do I actually calculate the Lorentz transformation of a field strength tensor

Say now I have an arbitrary field strength tensor $F$, and I want to boost it according to a Lorentz transformation matrix $(\Lambda)$ The transformation is given by $$ F^{'\mu \nu} = ...
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what is the kinematics of a particle with complex mass?

particles with real-mass have time-like kinematics ($ds^2 > 0$). particles with zero-mass have light-like kinematics ($ds^2 = 0$). particles with imaginary-mass have space-like kinematics ($ds^2 < ...
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Special relativity paradox and gravitation/acceleration equivalence

One of the features of the black hole complementarity is the following : According to an external observer, the infinite time dilation at the horizon itself makes it appear as if it takes an ...
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48 views

How to determine which object is moving relativistically?

Apologies in advance if I've overlooked some obvious point. In relativity, I know that there is no way to know if Object A or Object B is moving relative to the other. Each would see themselves as ...
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Are we traveling through time at the speed of light? [duplicate]

In the image below the y axis represents time and x represent velocity. Point D represents velocity c, point E represents 1 second per stationary observers second. What this chart is showing is as you ...
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Deriving the Lorentz Transformation

I have been trying to understand a more or less geometric derivation of the Lorentz transformation, and I'm getting stuck at one spot. The wikipedia article for the Lorentz transformation for frames ...
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59 views

Invariant equations of motion under Lorentz transformations

My question regards the statement that an equation of motion may be invariant under a Lorentz transformation I just finished watching the Stanford University special relativity lectures on special ...
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169 views

Doppler shift for a uniformly accelerating observer

This was given in textbook as an example. An observer on a spaceship with a four velocity $u$ is approaching from $x = +\infty$ a star at rest in the reference frame $S$ while undergoing constant ...
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33 views

Electron's Frame Aharonov-Bohm Effect

In the electron's inertial frame the solenoid moves past it in the Aharonov-Bohm Effect. That means the electron sees a time varying vector potential which, by: $\vec{E}$ = ...
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Minkowski Metric Signature

When I learned about the Minkowski Space and it's coordinates, it was explained such that the metric turns out to be $$ ds^{2} = -(cdx^{0})^{2} +(dx^{1})^{2} + (dx^{2})^{2} + (dx^{3})^{2} $$ where $ ...
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Reunion condition in the Twin Paradox

In the Twin Paradox two twins initially at rest in the same reference frame are separated and take different journeys through spacetime. Eventually they are reunited. What is the condition for the ...
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No length contraction in thought experiment with co-moving measuring stick

Suppose a person standing on a platform were to observe and measure the length of a train passing by. Instead of the usual approach involving a clock and knowing the speed of the train, the person ...
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6answers
346 views

Detecting absolute motion inside a box

This is not a contradiction and I know it is impossible but still consider a thought experiment by me and point out if something is wrong. See the following picture and then the explanation follows. ...
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34 views

Relativistically what is the difference between internal and rest mass energy of a body?

Relativistically what is the difference between internal energy and rest mass energy of a body? Could you please explain both philosphically and mathematically?
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Twin simultaneity paradox. Do they both live for an equal amount?

In the above example, if the spaceship was at rest in space relative to an external observer, and a burst of light was released at 12:00AM by the onboard observer who is located within the spaceship ...
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48 views

Is there a name for the linear quantity corresponding to the (quadratic) “interval $\Delta s^2$”?

Recently it has been affirmed here (again) that the quantity called "interval (also 'spacetime interval' or 'invariant interval')" is referring to two (in general distinct) events as arguments, such ...
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2answers
87 views

Stopping a Body (travelling at the speed of light) [closed]

While, I read that if a body accelerates to the speed of light would have an infinite mass and therefore, infinite energy would be required to maintain the speed. A question popped up in my mind: ...
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3answers
100 views

Doppler shift and special relativity

I have been listening to an audio course on Special Relativity. In the course the teacher repeatedly says that the "laws of physics are equally valid for all uniformly moving frames of reference". ...
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Do photons have/contribute to mass?

Do electrons gain mass by absorbing photons during excitation and releasing them by returning to the ground state? Do photons have mass in the form of energy by $E=mc^2$?
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161 views

Finding the total energy in centre of mass frame

I'm working through a problem in a special relativity textbook (Woodhouse) and I'm having some difficulty. I have to show that if I have a particle of rest mass $M$, total energy $E$ colliding with a ...
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1answer
88 views

What would happen to the human body if we went almost at the speed of light? [duplicate]

If we were to travel almost at $299\,792\,458~m/s$, or the speed of light, what would happen to the human body? Would the human body stay the same or would there be consequences that would harm the ...
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Do photons gain mass when they travel through glass?

Please correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe that photons slow down when travelling through glass. Does this mean they gain mass? Otherwise, what happens to extra kinetic energy? I understand now ...
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67 views

Question about scalar product of 2 four-vectors [closed]

I'm looking for help to prove that $\mathbf{a\cdot b}=-ab\ cosh \ \theta$, where: $a=\sqrt{\mathbf{-a\cdot a}}$, $b=\sqrt{\mathbf{-b\cdot b}}$, and $cosh \ \theta$ is $\gamma$, for a Lorentz ...
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Causality and how it fits in with relativity

I was talking to my teacher the other day about Einstein's spacetime and there's one thing he couldn't explain about the nature of Cause. I may be being stupid or just unable to comprehend, thanks for ...
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Time dilation: reference frame [closed]

So I'm calculating how long it will take for half of some muons to decay for in a stationary observers frame of reference. They have a half life of 2.2 * 10^-6 and are moving at a speed of .98c ...
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Speed of light paradox [duplicate]

If I send two rockets from the Earth in opposite directions, at, say, 60% of the speed of light relative to the Earth, then relative to each other they are travelling at 120% of the speed of light. ...
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Absoluteness of Simultaneity

I think this is a very important question because if simultaneity is absolute, then it shakes the foundation of relativity. But it was asked here a month ago, and no one answered it. Neither does ...
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Why wouldn't any Emission Theory work?

http://www.pitt.edu/~jdnorton/teaching/HPS_0410/chapters/origins_pathway/#Emission Here, at the Emission theories of light, I loved the discussed theory. There seems to be a contradiction right ...
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27 views

Klein paradox in graphene

When considering the Klein paradox in graphene Katsnelson, Novoselov and Geim introduce a potential barrier (see http://www.nature.com/nphys/journal/v2/n9/full/nphys384.html). But I cannot understand ...
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1answer
62 views

If time-like paths are geodesics, what physical principle applies to space-like intervals?

If I have a number of particles interacting with one another locally, then the center of mass of the system moves along a geodesic. Taking this further with the particles interacting via an EM field, ...
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83 views

Problem understanding Lorentz invariance [duplicate]

So they usually started with "...This is obviously Lorentz invariant, because of the 4-vector character of the quantity,..., (and after a two page long derivation) another quantity is also obviously ...
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Quaternions and 4-vectors

I recently realised that quaternions could be used to write intervals or norms of vectors in special relativity: $$(t,ix,jy,kz)^2 = t^2 + (ix)^2 + (jy)^2 + (kz)^2 = t^2 - x^2 - y^2 - z^2$$ Is it ...
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Why do we hyperbolas for distance? [closed]

I'm confused about how distance is measured in spacetime. I've read a few texts that say that our normal distance equation doesn't apply because it violates causality and because it won't work for a ...
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2answers
210 views

Transverse doppler effect in light

In most books to explain transverse Doppler effect the following example is given: Consider a source that emits flashes at frequency f0 (in its own frame), while moving across your field of vision at ...
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what is the charge and current density in system K2? [closed]

Consider there are two inertial reference of frames K1 and K2 in which K2 is moving with the boost velocity of V in direction of X2. If someone at the rest in system K1 finds the charge density $ \rho ...
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1answer
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Special relativity kinematics problem [closed]

I have this problem in SR kinematics. a spaceship travels near earth at c/2. it shoots off a light-ray at 45deg to its direction of travel (measured in its own ref frame). What is this angle in the ...
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1answer
105 views

Perfect fluid and Cauchy momentum equation

The stress-energy tensor of a perfect fluid is given by $$T^{\mu\nu}=\left(\rho+pc^{-2}\right)u^\mu u^\nu+pg^{\mu\nu}$$ The divergence of the stress-energy tensor is zero: $\nabla_\mu T^{\mu\nu}=0$. ...
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125 views

Is it possible to not move?

Whenever we consider velocity, it is always from a frame of reference. This means that if I am travelling .5c, I'm travelling at a speed between the speed of light and my current frame of references' ...
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60 views

Does EPR permit information to travel faster than light? [duplicate]

This question always throws me: Discuss if the EPR paradox violates special relativity? The information of the state of one particle is instantaneously transmitted to the other particle, but ...
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1answer
60 views

Representations of Lorentz algebra

It is well known that the Lorentz algebra can be written as two $SU(2)$ algebras. By defining $$N_i=\frac{1}{2}(J_i+iK_i), \qquad N^{\dagger}_i=\frac{1}{2}(J_i-iK_i)$$ we have ...
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Navigating a Time Machine

Notes: The background for this question is working out details of a sci-fi story. Answers to the effect of "time travel isn't possible" or "FTL isn't possible" are therefore not helpful. I'm looking ...
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1answer
61 views

Relativistic Lorentz Force with constant, perpendiuclar, and uniform E and B fields

I am trying to solve the following problem from the Fundamentals of Plasma Physics by Bittencourt (Problem 2.7): Analyze the motion of a relativistic charged particle in the presence of crossed ...
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69 views

4-momentum of photon

The 4-momentum is defined as $p=mU$ where m is the rest mass of the particle and $U$ is the 4-velocity. Now I am confused as to how this applies to a photon for which one can't define $U$ since there ...
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1answer
114 views

Is it possible to apply force to a light particle?

I know, the universal speed limit is the speed of light $c$. So, is it possible to apply more force to a light particle? What would happen to it if we could?
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2answers
48 views

Lorentz force Law

I want to ask a fundamental question about Lorentz force equation. Why is it important to incorporate both electric and magnetic forces into one single expression? I know magnetism is electricity's ...
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37 views

One extra conservation equation or angle relation for a relativistic collision

Edit: It seems that the derivation for the center of momentum frame was incorrect, due to the fact that the center of momentum velocity changes after the collision. This is also true for the ...
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Physical interpretation of distances

Suppose we have a universe with only two distinguishable particles, neglecting gravitation. These particles start off next to each-other, ostensibly "touching" each-other and at rest. If it takes ...
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Can someone explain what's the difference between all these terms in “Simple Words” with their “applications”? [closed]

I'm very confused between all these terms. Can someone explain what's the difference between Classical Mechanics, Relativistic Mechanics, Quantum Mechanics, Quantum Field Theory, ...