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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How can we justify dropping the absolute time hypothesis?

In some approaches to Special Relativity the theory is motivated talking about the Michelson-Morley experiment and how this relates to the postulate that the speed of light is the same in every ...
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1answer
37 views

Symmetric Time Dilation in Uniform Relative Motion

I feel (and hope) this is an easily answerable question among physicists versed in GR. I promise that I searched for other answers on the forum. Here goes: Observer 1 starts at X distance from ...
2
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3answers
221 views

Why is Einstein solution to the twin paradox different from the one on the internet?

The solution to the twin paradox found on the internet is that the twin on Earth is on 1 frame the entire journey, while the twin in space is in 2 frames for the duration of the journey. However, in ...
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0answers
25 views

The speed of light sets a lower limit to the rate at which a reference frame can pass through time. Is there anything that sets an upper limit? [duplicate]

Is there any "slowest" velocity that sets a cap on how fast a reference frame passes through time, or can you pass through time infinitely fast given a "slow" enough velocity?
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1answer
32 views

SR: constant acceleration wordline simultaneity

A worldline $W$ with constant acceleration $a$ is given parametrically by $$t=\frac{c}{a} \sinh(\frac{a \tau}{c}), \quad x=\frac{c^2}{a} \cosh(\frac{a \tau}{c}).$$ Let $E=(0,0,0,0)$. I showed that for ...
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2answers
120 views

Both Special and General Relativity carry long term unresolved paradoxes. Should not they now be “inconsistencies”? [closed]

I thought when a theory carries paradoxes, and they go unresolved, eventually they get called inconsistencies and the theory is assumed wrong somewhere. GR doesn't work at distances, say between ...
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1answer
54 views

speed of light and conservation of linear momentum

Acoording to the results of Michelson–Morley experiment, the speed of light is constant regardless of the velocity of the source. Now, I want someone to correct me if I am mistaking about the ...
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0answers
71 views

Amount of energy received from photons when traveling at near-light speed? [closed]

Special Relativity says that when you are traveling in a rocket ship at near-light speed, in effect your clocks "tick slower", however from your reference frame every one else's clocks "run slower". ...
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0answers
201 views

Twin Paradox - different approaches

What was the difference between Langevin's approach to the twin paradox and Max Von Laue's? I don't understand how Langevin tried to use the idea of absolute acceleration to explain the distinction in ...
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1answer
51 views

Typical Mathematical Questions about the Lorentz-Transformation

In SR (Special Relativity) we use the Lorentztransformation (LT) to relate one frame of reference to another. Say S to S' via a LT that depends only on v where v is the relative velocity between S and ...
2
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1answer
66 views

Magnetic monopoles and special relativity

I was thinking about magnetism as a product of special relativity and the result of this approach to the magnetic monopoles. So if magnetism is a product of electricity(like electricity from another ...
0
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1answer
190 views

Nuclear fission or fusion occurring at or near the speed of light

Suppose a device or object were traveling at or near the speed of light, and fission or fusion occurred while in this state of motion, creating an enormous blast, what would occur? Would this cause an ...
24
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5answers
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Will 1 gram of matter moving at relativistic speeds completely annihilate a larger quantity of stationary antimatter?

This is a question about the relativistic mass concept which I am having trouble understanding, mainly because of the scenario below. Simple scenario: Suppose 1 gram of matter is accelerated to 99% ...
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2answers
91 views

Speed of light and perception

So I'm reading a book called "The Elegant Universe" and here is a part of it Imagine two countries that have been at war are sitting down to sign a treaty ending hostilities while traveling aboard a ...
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0answers
93 views

Absoluteness of Simultaneity?

Here is a very good proof that simultaneity is absolute, not relative. The question: Is this proof wrong, or is Einstein? Can you prove it? What is the mistake in the proof, if any? If there is none, ...
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18answers
6k views

Is it possible for information to be transmitted faster than light by using a rigid pole?

Is it possible for information (like 1 and 0s) to be transmitted faster than light? For instance, take a rigid pole of several AU in length. Now say you have a person on each end, and one of them ...
0
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0answers
29 views

Is a Super-luminal Laser spot possible? [duplicate]

Note:This is not the same as Is the "How to break the speed of light" minute physics video wrong? because a larger distance is used in a different direction so that the time of flight of the ...
4
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3answers
8k views

Do light and sound waves have mass

I have been reading Hawking's 'A Brief History of Time' and it has gotten me thinking about Einstein's theory of relativity, in that it assumes that an object must have infinite mass if it is to be ...
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2answers
70 views

Does sending current upwards reduce the voltage?

I was thinking about relativistic situation of having a vertical wire on a neutron star or high-gravity environment and then say if I send current upwards (away from the ground) will the voltage be ...
2
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2answers
68 views

Transition from 4-potential to E and B [closed]

In my lecture notes there is a step that i cannot follow: $$\frac{i}{2}[\gamma^{\mu},\gamma^{\nu}] (\partial_{\mu}A_{\nu}-\partial_{\nu}A_{\mu})=: \sigma^{\mu\nu}F_{\mu\nu}=i\vec{\alpha} ...
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2answers
47 views

Rapidity and the momentum 4-vector

I'm having trouble making a conceptual leap in the Lorentz transformation of the energy-momentum 4-vector: The 4-vector in $S$ is related to $S'$ by, $$ \left( \begin{matrix} E' \\ p'_{x} ...
3
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3answers
96 views

Rotation in the x-t plane

I am currently studying special relativity using tensors. My lecture notes (which happen to be publicly accessible, see top of page 99) say that the standard configuration can be viewed as a rotation ...
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2answers
89 views

Is time dilation based on the formula for period of a pendulum?

The theory Albert Einstein put forward about special relativity mentions a possibility for time dilation, in which he states gravity has a considerable effect on time. And in high school physics we ...
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5answers
362 views

What is the exact mechanism by which time dilates?

What is the exact mechanism by which time dilates for a fast moving object? Can the time dilation be explained by any theory other than relativity?
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1answer
71 views

What is the meaning or purpose of inertial motions

It seems to me that, except for light, inertial motion is never possible in real world where there is gravity everywhere. It is at best some kind of idealization. But why inertial motions are so ...
2
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1answer
68 views

Does time really differs drastically?

As I heard/read time moves slower and slower for me as I speed up, but does it change drastically? Our current formulas say, If I go at a speed very close to light's, time almost stops. I've seen ...
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0answers
55 views

Can we make a particle travel faster than $c$ in this way? [duplicate]

In my sixth grade science class our teacher asked us, for homework, if it was possible to have anything travel faster than light. Thinking about this, I came up with a rough idea of a way to make ...
4
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1answer
53 views

Do 2-body elliptic orbits precess in special relativity?

Einstein famously explained the anomalous precession of Mercury by showing that in general relativity elliptic orbits precess even in the 2-body problem. But apparently in the early days of quantum ...
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2answers
125 views

What would a nuclear explosion look like at relativistic speeds where time dilation and length contraction become significant?

Suppose a rocket carrying a nuclear weapon is moving past our planet at very near the speed of light while a stationary observer watches from here on Earth. As the rocket passes directly overhead, an ...
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2answers
110 views

Timelike curves in Special Relativity

I have a question that probably might sound silly to most of you. We know that a natural Lorentz-invariant parametrization of a timelike curve is provided by: $$\tau$$ the Lorentz-invariant proper ...
4
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1answer
75 views

General construction of equations of motion for free particles

I've got a question regarding the different Symmetrie-Lie-Groups of Newtonian Mechanics and special realtivity. Is there a canonical way to obtain the equations of motion for a free particle only by ...
4
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3answers
138 views

Is it true that all particles that have a speed less than the speed of light must also have mass?

I've previously learned that massive particles cannot achieve the speed of light. But recently I read that, concerning the gels that refract and bounce light within around enough that it can travel ...
0
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1answer
53 views

Is there a spacelike curve connection two events in Minkowski space?

Assume two events in Minkowski Space (signature $(-,+,+,+)$) $p_1$ and $p_2$. One claims that there is a spacelike curve which connects these two points in Minkowski space. I have some trouble to ...
2
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1answer
33 views

Force on a moving charge in relative frame

Consider a particle of charge $q$ moving at velocity, $v$, enters a magnetic field $B$ which is perpendicular to its motion. Now consider two observers, one stationary and the other moving at the ...
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2answers
100 views

Possible mechanics based on the known symmetries in the nature (investigating rumor)

Somewhere I've heard about a relative new mathematical result regarding mechanics. Specifically, there is a list of the known symmetries of mechanics (both Newtonian and relativistic), i.e. different ...
2
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3answers
475 views

What is a body's momentum really equal to?

I know a body's momentum is equal to the product of its velocity and mass. But what kind of mass? Relativistic mass or rest mass?
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0answers
28 views

How to add together non-parallel rapidities?

How to add together non-parallel rapidities? The Lorentz transformation is essentially a hyperbolic rotation, which rotation can be described by a hyperbolic angle, which is called the rapidity. I ...
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1answer
89 views

Derivation of proper acceleration in terms of rapidity

In the Wikipedia page for proper acceleration, an equation for proper acceleration in terms of rapidity is given as $\alpha = \frac{\Delta \eta}{\Delta \tau}$, where $\eta$ is the rapidity of the ...
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0answers
73 views

Lagrangian, geodesics and relativity [closed]

My background is in maths, but I have been studying some basic physics with occasional input from a friend who is studying for a physics PhD. Due to my background, I am keen to visualize things ...
0
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1answer
52 views

How to determine which object in a special relativity physics problem has proper time?

I'm having some difficulty determining which object/location should have proper time applied to it in relativity physics problems. Example: If an electron travels at 40% the speed of light then ...
4
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2answers
97 views

where is the logical hole in this reasoning? (special relativity)

I cannot see the problem in the following reasoning, so I'd be glad if you could help me out. The problem is defining a notion of "length" that is consistent with the constancy of the speed of light ...
2
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1answer
28 views

Polarization of light for a fast moving observer

For a fast moving observer the frequency of light becomes shifted due to the (relativistic) Doppler effect. But what about the polarization of the light? Could it be, that e.g. circular polarized ...
2
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1answer
57 views

Is there a time dilation between my left and right arms?

Is there a time dilation between my left and right arms when walking? due to special relativity I guess Thanks
0
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1answer
36 views

Is there serious research on superluminal travel? [closed]

I was wondering if there are any serious attempts, or any ideas for loopholes in the current theories, that would enable us humans to travel with a speed greater than the speed of light?
0
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1answer
35 views

Perpendicular doppler effect photons

If I have a photon with frequency f in the lab frame and the observe it in a inertial frame moving perpendicular to the photon. The direction of the velocity of the photon must change but does this ...
6
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7answers
489 views

“Reality” of length contraction in SR

I was in argument with someone who claims that length contraction is not "real" but only "apparent", that the measurement of a solid rod in its rest reference frame is the "real length" of the rod and ...
2
votes
1answer
85 views

Massless particle that have momentum not equal to 0

I saw some problems in special relativity that use conservation of total energy and momentum and the conclusions are spectacular. My problem is the following: how can a massless particle like neutrino ...
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1answer
55 views

Space Contraction [duplicate]

Is there any experimental evidence of space contraction which theory of spacial relativity predicts? You should bear in mind that GPS & muon detection beyond the distance permitted by its half ...
1
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1answer
313 views

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% ...
5
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0answers
128 views

What is the proper time used in relativistic non-equilibrium statistical physics?

In the literature one often finds covariant relativistic generalizations of classical non equilibrium statistical equations (Boltzmann, Vlasov, Landau, Fokker-Planck, etc...) but I wonder what is the ...