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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Time dilation. Why?

We are able to predict, measure and mathematically demonstrate time dilation, but are we able to explain 'why' it happens? what would be that explanation? Edit1 Think the question backwards: After ...
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83 views

4 dimensional interpretation

Has it ever been hypothetized that, in a 4 dimensional space, being time the 4th D, one body could travel through the dimensions at the combined speed of $c$? If a body is at rest in the classical 3 ...
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Our speed and direction by comparing the speed of light?

If the speed of light is constant no matter the speed of the source, shouldn't we be able to know the direction and exact speed we are going relative to the absolute 0 in speed? If a photon is sent in ...
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44 views

Do the mediums decrease or increase the speed of light? (source to target) [duplicate]

If sun is the source of light then is it possible that the speed of light might increase depending on the mediums its going through or its not possible.
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1answer
134 views

Planck length paradox [closed]

This is a paradox I thought of a few days ago, and I wanted to ask whether it makes any sense and where the mistake is. We know that the nothing but light can move faster than light itself. So in a ...
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0answers
27 views

What does it mean to perturb the electromagnetic energy with respect to a change in a Lorentz frame?

I am perturbing the energy of an electromagnetic field using \begin{align} \dfrac{\partial U}{\partial \zeta} = \dfrac{1}{\mu} \boldsymbol{H}\cdot \dfrac{\partial \boldsymbol{H}}{\partial \zeta} + ...
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102 views

magnet moving in space

I know that a time varying magnetic field produces an electric field even in the absence of a conducting body, because thats how em waves work. But can you say the same for a space varying magnetic ...
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2answers
63 views

How to construct generators and Lie Algebra for Lorentz group?

I'm trying to figure out Lorentz group in 2+1. First of all, I'd like to think the special orthgonal group as a combination of rotation and boost in space. Then I construct it as below. First rotation ...
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42 views

is speed of light is the limit [closed]

If an electron is away from a proton about 1 kilometer and the proton is fixed what will be the velocity of electron when they collide? I calculated it its speed was coming out to be more than the ...
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80 views

Relativistic momentum of an electron

Suppose we have some interaction between a photon and an (initially) stationary electron, and we wished to find the final momentum of the electron. Should we solve this using conservation of momentum, ...
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229 views

Is there any upper limit on a particles kinetic energy?

While the speed of light is the "ultimate speed limit" for any particle.. Is there any upper limit to kinetic energy?
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1answer
38 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 ...
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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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61 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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2answers
137 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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0answers
82 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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1answer
55 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 ...
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1answer
76 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 ...
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101 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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240 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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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 ...
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5answers
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Paradox in special relativity

Yesterday we started relativity on our physics class, and my professor taught us a few concepts. We did some examples on how things changed by looking them from different reference systems, and a ...
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103 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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2answers
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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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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 ...
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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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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} ...
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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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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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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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1answer
75 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 ...
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57 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 ...
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4answers
226 views

How to derive $E=mc^{2}$?

Is there some way to derive $E=mc^{2}$? I can understand that energy in something is proportional to its mass, but the $c^{2}$ part. I have no idea. It seems like the way the units are going it would ...
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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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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 ...
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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 ...
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1answer
38 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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3answers
490 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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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
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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 ...
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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 ...
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1answer
57 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 ...
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1answer
32 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 ...
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1answer
41 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?
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
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2answers
101 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 ...
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1answer
40 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 ...
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1answer
94 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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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 ...
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Does time dilation imply that events do not take place?

I take two mirrors parallel and facing each other. A light pulse is being infinitely reflected between the two mirrors $M_1,M_2$. $E_1,E_2$ are the events when the pulse is reflected by $M_1,M_2$, ...