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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Hamiltonians and Lagrangians, Euclidean and Hyperbolic: Are they related?

The Lagrangian of a system is the difference between its kinetic energy $T$ and potential energy $V$, and is relativistically invariant: $L = T - V$ The Hamiltonian of the same system is the sum ...
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209 views

Relativistic Mass including exponential decay

So from what I gather, relativistic mass = $m_0\gamma$ where $\gamma$ is the lorentz factor. So if i have a mass that is .5 at rest then it is safe to say that the relativistic mass will be 1 if it ...
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199 views

The temperature in space

We know that cosmic microwave background temperature is about 2.7K. But what temperature we will measure in space using a simple Kelvin thermometer in the shadow? Can it be lower than 2.7K? Suppose a ...
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147 views

What are the increasingly sophisticated ways to perform a Lorentz transformation?

Since Einstein first derived the Lorentz transformations, their generalisation and execution has changed over the century. So starting with those first derived by Einstein: What are the main, ...
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455 views

How can be proved that one-way speed of light is equal to two-way speed?

Using Special relativity theory, of course. Can Lorentz transformations to "tell" something about it? "Wikipedia's" article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/One-way_speed_of_light .
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637 views

Energy conservation and center-of-mass inertial frames

For a given set of fast-moving objects in empty space, the maximum mass-energy that can be extracted by using only interactions between objects in the set (e.g., colliding all of them together) is ...
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393 views

Time dilation at the speed of light

Does a massless particle travelling at the speed on light in a vacuum (c) experience an infinite time dilation effect? i.e. Would the time dilation extend from the perspective of the massless ...
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357 views

Four momentum of a photon squared, trouble with combining wave-particle duality and energy-frequency relation

Since $p^2=E^2-\vec{p}^2=m^2$ and $E=h\nu=\frac{hc}{\lambda}$ and $|\vec{p}|=\frac{h}{\lambda}$ we have that $p^2=\frac{h^2c^2}{\lambda^2}-\frac{h^2}{\lambda ^2}$ If I go to Planck-units ...
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Would time freeze if you could travel at the speed of light?

I read with interest about Einstein's Theory of Relativity and his proposition about the speed of light being the universal speed limit. So, if I were to travel in a spacecraft at (practically) the ...
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171 views

Is the classical Doopler Effect, for light shift, $1-v/c$, exact? What is it an approximation of?

Is the classical doopler effect for light shift equal to $1-v/c$ exact or an approximation of a classical formula? I know that it is an approximation of the relativistic formula, but what was the ...
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2answers
533 views

Is there a subtlety to the Lorentz transformations one needs to be aware of?

Playing around with the four acceleration $$\left(\gamma^4_u \frac{\vec a\cdot\vec u}{c^2}\vec u +\gamma^2_u\vec a,\, \gamma^4_u\frac{\vec a\cdot\vec u}{c}\right)$$ I found the time part for frame' ...
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Is this a quaternion Lorentz Boost?

The quaternion Lorentz boost $v'=hvh^*+ 1/2( (hhv)^*-(h^*h^*v)^*)$ where $h$ is $(\cosh(x),\sinh(x),0,0)$ was derived by substituting the hyperbolic sine and cosine for the sine and cosine in the ...
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529 views

Do Lorentz Boosts in the same direction form a group?

I know that two consecutive Lorentz Boosts in different directions produce a rotation and therefore Lorentz Boosts don't form a group. But, my intuition tells me that, Lorentz Boosts in the same ...
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224 views

Decay of particle (for example $\pi^+$); Find energy [closed]

I don't understand how to solve this: A $\pi^+$ decays into a muon and neutrino. Find the pion's energy if max $E_\nu$ / min $E_\nu$ = 100/1; $m_\nu = 0$ $m_\pi*c^2 = 140\text{ peta-eV}$
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Clarification of rest mass

So I have only just been introduced to the concept of rest mass in Special Relativity. Do we assume that the rest mass of a fundamental particle is constant in all inertial reference frames? i.e. is ...
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3answers
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Getting from $E^2 - p^2c^2 = m^2c^4$ to $E = \gamma mc^2$ [closed]

What is each mathematical step (in detail) that one would take to get from: $E^2 - p^2c^2 = m^2c^4$ to $E = \gamma mc^2$, where $\gamma$ is the relativistic dilation factor. This is for an ...
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Trouble with the Lorentz law of force: Incompatibility with special relativity and momentum conservation?

In Physical Review Letters, there was a paper recently published: Masud Mansuripur, Trouble with the Lorentz Law of Force: Incompatibility with Special Relativity and Momentum Conservation, Phys. ...
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4answers
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Is there an easy way to show that $x^2-t^2=1/g^2$ for a (relativistic) body undergoing acceleration g?

A professor asked me about the (c=1) equation: $$x^2 - t^2 = 1/g^2$$ which I used in a paper. Or with $c$: $$x^2 - (ct)^2 = c^4/g^2.$$ I told him that it was the exact equation of motion for a ...
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1answer
577 views

Can a black hole form due to Lorentz contraction? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: If a 1kg mass was accelerated close to the speed of light would it turn into a black hole? Imagine, a rod of length L is moving with velocity approaching the speed of ...
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2answers
751 views

Does the mass of a body absorbing photons increase?

Let's say I have a photon collector in orbit around the sun. It manages to collect photons perfectly efficiently, that is, without radiating off any energy. Then, using Einstein's equation: $$E = m ...
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Taylor approximation of e(v) [closed]

Relativistic mass $\displaystyle m(v)=\frac{m_o}{\sqrt{(1-(v/c)^2}}$ $m_o$ = mass of object measured at rest $c$ = speed of light ($3\times 10^8\;m/s$) $v$ = speed If the total relativistic energy ...
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549 views

Conservation of Energy in Special Relativity

In classical Newtonian mechanics, from what I understand, conservation of energy stems from the fact that all known forces are conservative forces, and vector calculus tells us that they can be ...
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630 views

Are gravitomagnetic monopoles hypothesized?

My understanding is that gravitomagnetism is essentially the same relativistic effect as magnetism. If so, why is it that I've heard so much about magnetic monopoles, but never gravitomagnetic ...
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213 views

Behavior of shock waves at relativistic speeds

Suppose I am in a spaceship traveling inertially at a velocity $v$ that is of the same order as $c$. As I pass by a metal bar that is oriented parallel to $v$, someone hits it with another metal bar, ...
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Will a black hole increase the speed of sound above the speed of light in this medium

For the sake of this question we are inside the EH and a sound wave enters from our perspective as the sound moves closer to us at the EH would it speed up. Specifically how would the extreme ...
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Is a photon “fixed in spacetime”?

From what I've read, according to relativity, a photon does not "experience" the passage of time. (Can we say there is no past/present/future for a photon?) Would it be better to say a photon is ...
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Effect of gravity at near-lightspeeds

Let's say I'm in a space station, hurtling towards our galaxy nearly close to the speed of light. From my reference frame, I see the galaxy coming towards my ship at the same speed. I pass the Sun, ...
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Does the passage of time effect a photons entanglement with another?

I recently read an article about "Delayed-choice entanglement swapping". Here is an excerpt from the article: Delayed-choice entanglement swapping consists of the following steps. (I use the ...
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185 views

Comparing Lagrangian in Special Relativity vs General Relativity for a weak gravitational field

This is a sequel to this question. Who knows a difference between the Lagrangian in SR and GR for a weak gravitational field in non-relativistic case? What is the reason of this difference?
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91 views

Perpendicular Fields and Equations of Motion [closed]

I have the following problem to solve: A particle of mass $m$ and charge $e$ moves in the laboratory in crossed, static, uniform, electric and magnetic fields. $\mathbf{E}$ is parallel to the ...
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195 views

Which new insight did $E=mc^2$ give us?

I had a special relativity course at university. Now I'm trying to extract what new insight $E=mc^2$ did give us. I mean that moving mass has/is energy (kinetic) not new. The energy merely changed ...
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690 views

Calculate relativistic boost to COM frame from two arbitary velocities?

Looking in Goldstein's book, there doesn't seem to be a standard formula to calculate the COM frame velocity for two particles, from their relativistic velocities in the lab frame, although it is done ...
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Factor 2 and equations for the weak gravitational field

By using some axioms people derives equation for Lorentz force and, then, Maxwell's equations from the Coulomb's law and Lorentz transformations. When I used analogical methodology for Newton's law of ...
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579 views

What is the displacement of an accelerated and relativistic object?

Displacement in an accelerated classical object is: $$s=ut+\frac {at^2}{2}$$ What is the displacement of an accelerated relativistic object? In Newtonian mechanics there are two types of ...
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The equivalent electric field of a magnetic field

I know that Lorentz force for a charge $q$, with velocity $\vec{v}$ in magnetic field $\vec{B}$ is given by $$\vec{F} =q \vec{v} \times \vec{B}$$ but there will exist a frame of reference where ...
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Special Relativity and $E = mc^2$

I read somewhere that $E=mc^2$ shows that if something was to travel faster than the speed of light then they would have infinite mass and would have used infinite energy. How does the equation show ...
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576 views

Spin matrices in Dirac equation

Why in every textbook when deriving Dirac's equation the smallest possible matrices ($2 \times 2$) are used? I wonder why one couldn't use spin 1 matrices ($3 \times 3$) and get relativistic equation ...
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Can relativistic kinetic energy be derived from Newtonian kinetic energy?

Relativistic kinetic energy is usually derived by assuming a scalar quantity is conserved in an elastic collision thought experiment, and deriving the expression for this quantity. To me, it looks ...
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How to derive addition of velocities without the Lorentz transformation?

Lorentz contraction and time dilatation can be deduced without Lorentz transformation. Can you deduce also the theorem of addition of velocities $$w~=~\dfrac{u+v}{1+uv/c^2}$$ without Lorentz ...
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What would happen to electronic circuits when traveling near the speed of light?

Imagine a space ship, loaded with all sorts of computer systems, traveling near the speed of light. Electricity itself is very fast, and can reach speeds close the speed of light. (up to 99% ...
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Twin paradox - observers counter orbiting Earth

Imagine three observers - one (A) stationary on the surface of Earth (latitude 0 deg) and two others orbiting the planet in the same circular equatorial orbit just in the opposite direction. When the ...
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Spin-Statistics Theorem (SST)

Please can you help me understand the Spin-Statistics Theorem (SST)? How can I prove it from a QFT point of view? How rigorous one can get? Pauli's proof is in the case of non-interacting fields, how ...
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647 views

Is the change in kinetic energy of a particle frame independent?

Intuitively, I would expect the change in kinetic energy of a particle to be frame independent. It just doesn't "feel" right that between two points in time-space, one frame should measure a change in ...
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How can time be relative?

I don't understand how time can be relative to different observers, and I think my confusion is around how I understand what time is. I have always been told (and thought) that time is basically a ...
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Does locality emerge from (classical) Lagrangian mechanics?

Consider a (classical) system of several interacting particles. Can it be shown that, if the Lagrangian of such a system is Lorenz invariant, there cannot be any space-like influences between the ...
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A simple pendulum moving at a relativistic speed - how does the period change?

I've been pondering the precise mechanism of time dilation for the example of a simple pendulum in two different situations: The observer and ground are at rest in one frame of reference; the ...
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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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Entanglement and relativity

Two observers A and B measure a quantum entangled state and obtain correlated results, even if their separation is space-like (each is out of the light cone of the other). A possible interpretation is ...
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269 views

In What Frame of Reference does the Special Theory of Relativity Operate? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Time Dilation - How does it know which Frame of Reference to age slower? This has bugged me for years. According to the theory of relativity, the faster an object ...
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395 views

Special Relativity - Relativistic Dynamics

I've been wrestling with this problem but to no avail. I'm hoping that someone here can give me a little nod in the right direction. Problem statement: A thrust-beam space vehicle works bearing a ...