The speed of light is fundamental universal constant that marks the maximum speed at which information can propagate. Its value is $299792458\frac{\mathrm{m}}{\mathrm{s}}$.

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If a photon is exists in 'timeless' state, how can objects around it move? [duplicate]

My understanding is that light does not experience time. In attempting to understand what the universe would be like from the perspective of a photon, the answer I get is that the universe would be ...
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$E=mc^2$ what is unique about the speed of light? [duplicate]

What unique property of light, makes it the conversion factor between energy and mass? It has to be more than a coincidence that the speed of light, just happens to be the correct number number to ...
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39 views

hypothetical super luminal speed mass question [on hold]

Here is a hypothetical question an object that is made of titanium reaches the speed of 91736492148 kph my question is what happens to it if the speed is constant?
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63 views

Can a body ever experience acceleration this strong?

Using the Schwarzschild radius formula, I approximated the Sun's Schwarzschild radius to be $3\text{ km}$. Now assuming I have a body (not a human body) which is at a distance of $10\text{ km}$ from ...
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1answer
66 views

Einsteins idea about solving the ether problem [duplicate]

I'm struggling a bit with my Special Relativity course. Most exercises are quite trivial and can be done without much effort, but when you really start to think and analyse why and how certain things ...
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Is there any limit on movement of space itself?

According to special relativity, c is the maximum speed at which all matter and information in the universe can travel. [IN SPACE] But the inflationary hypothesis says the space itself expanded ...
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50 views

Black Holes and Light [duplicate]

It is said that photons have zero rest mass so how can gravitational force of a black hole affect light? And if photons do have some effective mass while traveling at speed of light then only can a ...
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55 views

Does light slow down (for an external observer) as it approaches the event horizon?

As I understand, for an external observer nothing even enters a black hole because it takes infinite time in his frame of reference for something to actually reach the event horizon. I also read that ...
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How is light trajectory affected by the trajectory of environment it passes through?

There's a sci-fi concept of slow light that I find very amazing: Imagine a glass material that has index of refraction $n$ say, $3,000,000,000$ which means: $$v_{glass} = \frac{c_{vacuum}}{n} = ...
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Light Speed in a vacuum [closed]

I saw recently that the speed of light is 186,000 miles/second, then later read about the speed of light 'in a vacuum', obviously meaning space. Does this mean that gravity or air effects the speed ...
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What would be observed by two observers traveling away from one another at 0.75c? (And why?) [closed]

What would be observed by two observers traveling away from one another at 0.75c, and why? Suppose that two observers O1 and O2 are at a point S. Then, they begin traveling away from one another at ...
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What will I see if I travelled to a distant planet in 100 times faster than speed of light and look back? [closed]

Consider this scenario. I enter a space ship at 10:00 AM, it starts to move at a speed 100 times faster than light, I travel for 55 mins. And then slow down to very much less than speed of light and ...
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Are the distances we measure to objects in the universe incorrect because of their relative motion?

For example the agreed distance to the Andromeda Galaxy is 2.5 million light years, and consequentially, we see the galaxy as it was 2.5 million years ago! (A time interval in which the galaxy must ...
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If Julian Barbour is Correct, is the Speed of Light Special?

According to this article in Discover Magazine, Albert Einstein's Theory of Relativity is wrong, because it didn't fully live up to the ideas of Einstein's idol, Ernst Mach. Mach proposed a truly ...
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If the vacuum is not “emptiness” why the speed of the electromagnetic wave is independent of the frame of reference?

If the vacuum were "emptiness" it were easy to accept that there is no "preferred frame of coordinates" and the light velocity is the same in any inertial frame of coordinates. But the vacuum is an ...
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Is space-time a property of mass?

Imagine looking at a quasar millions of light years away. From your perspective, a photon emitted by the quasar has spent millions of years travelling through space, and its trajectory has been ...
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Can you see back in time? [closed]

When you look at the stars, the light that you see is probably hundreds of years old. Which means that you don't know if they still exist. Does all this mean, that if you fly in a speed faster than ...
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61 views

Experimental determination of speed of light

How is the speed of light measured by the most current method i.e. using lasers and atomic clocks? Alternatively, is there a better method?
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How much impact would it make in science if the speed of light is discovered to be variable? [closed]

So if such a thing happens, how would it alter current physics?
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If we spend enough money, how fast can we accerelate huge spacecraft in order to reach the nearest habitable planet(19 ly away)? [closed]

Somewhere I read that the nearest earth-like planet is 19 light years away. If this is true, and there are no closer earth-like planets, do we have the knowledge, technology and resources to colonize ...
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4answers
129 views

Is it theoretically possible to have a universe where sound travels faster than light $c$? [closed]

We all "know" nothing can travel faster than light. However, if we're allowed to tweak the fundamental constants of nature, is it theoretically possible that such an universe might exist? Update: I ...
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181 views

How can a black hole reduce the speed of light? [closed]

If the speed of light is always constant then how can a black hole reduce light's speed?
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64 views

Thought experiment about wavelength of light through a medium [duplicate]

Though the physical concepts and mathematics are highly rudimentary, I often try to comprehend exactly why light wants to keep it's frequency, yet alter it's wavelength as it travels through a medium, ...
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What is the rate at which the field of an electron spreads? [duplicate]

There are 2 steps in the creation of a force field: (1) first the object comes into existence (2) then the field appears. In the case when a photon splits into an electron and an antielectron, these 2 ...
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Why are we not able to move at the speed of light again? [duplicate]

In many many answers here and papers everywhere, it's often stated that no object can move faster than light. Why is that again?
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Time dilation: faster or slower?

I was wondering about Time-dilation in Special Relativity. I am still a middle school student who wonders so please excuse me if I missed any important aspects. Let us assume we have a system of ...
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Is it a postulate or a well proven fact that speed of light remains constant w.r.t any observer?

We usually heard that speed of light in vacuum $c$ remains same no matter how observer is moving? I am wondering whether is it taken as a postulate or a proven phenomenon that $c$ is constant ...
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What's so special about the speed of light? [duplicate]

What's so special about the speed of light? Why do many equations in physics include the speed of light in vacuum $c$? Why do so many thing depend upon it? Why can't it be the speed of sound? ...
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1answer
93 views

What wilI I observe when travelling at almost the speed of light? [duplicate]

If I and a group of friends are travelling at or just below the speed of light - can I see myself, can I see them, or they me? Would we see anything at all?
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If something is not moving in space, is it moving on the time axis at the speed of light? [duplicate]

I heard this theory yesterday: If something is not moving in space, then it is moving on the time axis at the speed of light. I realize that in essence there is no object which can be considered as ...
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How can light have the same speed for all observers? [duplicate]

I'm a little confused on this. If you're travelling at, say, 10% of the speed of light then light is travelling at 3x10^8 ms^(-1) relative to you. If you're moving at 80% of the speed of light and ...
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Breaking the speed of light…? [duplicate]

I know the speed of light can't be broken, but I cannot figure out why the following scenario is not possible. I'm not a physicist myself but I know the basic stuff. Assume you're in a car ...
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Does the Doppler effect disprove the constancy of $c$? [closed]

Why doesn't the Doppler effect disprove the relativity postulate that $c$ is constant relative to all sources or observers? It seems it does because of the following example: Suppose a ship of ...
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Is there a difference between the speed of light and that of a photon?

As in the title I am curious whether there is a difference between the speed of photon and the speed of light, and if there is what is the cause of such a difference?
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Can time pass for a photon if it's moving in a medium? [duplicate]

If time does not pass for a photon traveling at the speed of light, which can only occur when traveling in a vacuum, what happens when it is slowed down by traveling through non vacuum space like ...
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2answers
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If rest mass does not change with $v$ then why is infinite energy required to accelerate an object to the speed of light?

I know that as the velocity increases, the mass of the object also increases so it becomes tougher and tougher to move the object which ultimately leads to a requirement of infinite energy to ...
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Special relativity and missing factors of $c$

I am doing problems in a textbook called 'Introduction to Classical Mechanics' by David Morin. In one of the questions it says the following: In the lab frame, two particles move with speed $v$ ...
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Velocities of waves (such as visible light, and radio)

The speed of light in a vacuum is a constant 299,792,458 m/s. In water, it is much slower. Does this happen to such waves as radio, or X-ray? (Would say, a 3 meter wavelength travel slower in air than ...
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Is the amount of radiation you receive in space constant regardless of velocity?

I'm only in high school, so this will probably have fatal flaws. So basically in space, there is bound to be stray radiation, whether from the stars, or cosmic background, floating around right. And ...
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Accelerating beyond the speed of light? [duplicate]

Suppose you have a lot of fuel in your spaceship, in deep space - enough to accelerate at 1mss for a long time. What would happen once you are travelling close to the speed of light? Could you reach ...
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1answer
80 views

Why don't clocks on a train read the same time?

Two clocks are positioned at the ends of a train of length $L$ (as measured in its own frame). They are synchronized in the train frame. The train travels past you at speed $v$. It turns out ...
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How can a particle in a medium ever travel faster than light? [duplicate]

In some media, mass-carrying particles can go faster than light: Cherenkov radiation, ... is electromagnetic radiation emitted when a charged particle... passes through a dielectric medium at a ...
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2answers
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Did Newton argue that particles speed up when entering a more dense medium?

Statement: Newton argued that particles speed up as they travel from air into a dense, transparent object, such as glass. From this source, I gather that he did argue that the light particles ...
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Lightspeed (invariance) measurement methods

I would like to know, how measurements of the speed of light are conducted these days, especially in the context of the invariance of $c$. Do all the methods involve mirrors to redirect the photons ...
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5answers
389 views

Special Relativity, 2nd Postulate — Why? [duplicate]

As a lowly physics undergrad who has been chewing on this 2nd postulate of special relativity for a year or more, I simply can't wrap my head around reasons why it is true or how Einstein might have ...
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4answers
71 views

The Equivalence Principle approaching the speed of light [duplicate]

If, in local system, an accelerated system is completely physically equivalent to a system inside a gravitational field. Acceleration results in an increase in speed. Right? What happens when the ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Doppler Shift when Light Travels Through Two Different Mediums

When considering the Doppler shift, the 'canonical equation' is $$f=\frac{c+vr}{c+vs}f_0$$ However, this equation seems to run into trouble in the following situation: A light source inside water is ...
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What is light and how does it travel? [duplicate]

My question is: What is light, and, more specifically, how does it travel? I've been contemplating a theory that I watched on Youtube (which has no real credibility to my knowledge), the Cosmic ...
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How can light travel at speed of light? [duplicate]

I am well aware that the speed of light is a universal constant at which nothing but light can travel. But why? Why can even light travel at such a speed? Our maths tell us that anything with rest ...
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Speed of light in general relativity

My question has a few parts concerning the speed of light in general relativity. Firstly, time changes in response to gravity and speed. Therefore, as gravity effects time in an area of space, should ...