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

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Atoms traveling at the speed of light [closed]

If an atom was to travel at the speed of light (although impossible), wouldn't the nucleus break apart? I say this because the particles holding the protons together in the nucleus wouldn't be able to ...
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Can a very long screen display an object travelling faster than light? [duplicate]

I know information is not allowed to travel faster than light. Now suppose we have a very long screen displaying a moving light dot. Can the screen display the light dot which travels faster than ...
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232 views

Dimensional Paradox Demonstrated by Light Moving Between Parallel Mirrors

In a thought experiment, there are two parallel mirrors which are very long which also face each other. One has a hole in it and one flash from a strobe light shines into that hole. One observer in ...
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What happens 'inside' the event horizon of a black hole, in particular to photon speed

This is a follow-up question to two answers given here and here, where the speed in different coordinate systems is discussed when approaching the Schwarzschild radius. To cite, derived directly from ...
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2answers
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Is it possible to create an optical medium where sound can travel faster than light?

The speed of light decreases with increase in the density of the optical medium whereas the speed of sound increases with increase in the density of the medium. So is there any possibility to ...
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Why should gluons move at a speed determined by $\mu_0$ and $\varepsilon_0$?

I understand that the speed of light can be derived from Maxwell's equations, giving $c=\frac{1}{\sqrt{\mu_0\varepsilon_0}}$ I furthermore understand how the principle of invariance of laws w.r.t. ...
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Can gravity affect light speed? [duplicate]

Can gravity affect light speed, for example slow it down ?
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1answer
100 views

Can we accelerate photons to travel at speed of $1.5c$? Or any $xc$ when $x > 1$? [closed]

Can we move photons to travel at speed greater than speed of light in vacuum? If no then why? For example: I want to send some photons at 1.5c. Is that possible? How a photon of light can go from 0 ...
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What would be seen if a firing laser is accelerated to relativistic speeds then back?

Consider this scenario: Two identical space ships, the SS Observer and the SS Accelerator. Each ship is spherical with a band of mirrored material around the outside and contains a green laser. They ...
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175 views

If refraction slows down light, isn't it possible to hold light still?

I have a quick question about the refraction of light, and I'm sorry if it seems a bit simplistic or even stupid, but I'm still learning. We know that when light passes through a denser medium, it ...
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1answer
64 views

Speed of different colours of light [duplicate]

Speed of light is different for different colours. What does the speed of a particular colour of light depend on? Which colour of light has the highest speed?
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1answer
55 views

Given the 1st Postulate of SR, doesn't the 2nd Postulate go without saying? [duplicate]

i've been looking over possible duplicates of this question and haven't found one yet. so, using Wikipedia as the textual source: The Principle of Relativity – The laws by which the states of ...
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How the speed of light is constant in the universe if it decreases in water and glass and some other objects? [duplicate]

My teacher told me that speed of light is constant in the universe. But in optics it is clearly shown that speed of light slows down in some objects. Please help.
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From the photons perspective

Probably been answered but couldn't find the answer. From the perspective of a photon: - For the photon to travel from body A to body B would take 0 secs. - The universe would be one point in ...
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1answer
59 views

Why phase velocity of light is slower in a dielectric than vacuum?

Why does light speed suffer a reduction when it passes through a homogeneous dielectric medium? I know my math says so, i.e.- a highly polarizable ($\chi$) medium is associated with high $\epsilon$ ...
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1answer
118 views

Is max speed of causality (light) proven experimentally?

Is it possible to have an alternative theory which is consistent with experiments supporting GR, but which doesn't mandate a speed limit on causality? In other words, I understand there is ...
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32 views

How come an electron's wave function being nonzero at far distances doesn't mean it can travel faster than light? [duplicate]

I think the wave function of a free electron is nonzero almost everywhere. In particular there are regions of space arbitrarily far away where the electron has positive probability of being found. If ...
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1answer
60 views

A rope between Earth and Moon - Length and Speed of Light [duplicate]

An earlier question was asked on what would happen if a rope was attached between Moon and Earth, but the question was more about the impacts in terms of geology. We keep the same experiment setup : ...
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1answer
47 views

Hows does one account for the speed of light delay in field equations?

Suppose I have a simple time varying classical field $\vec{f}$. The force of the field on an object with a charge $X$ at a position $S$ is: $ \vec{F_f}\left( t \right) = X \vec{f}\left( t \right) $ ...
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Limitations of radiowave speed [closed]

If radio waves travel as fast as light, how was nixon able to talk to the apollo moon crew in real-time over a phone? it seems this concept makes the idea of seeing something billions of light years ...
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2answers
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If curved paths imply that the vehicle is accelerated, how come do we assume that light gets curved whilst its speed is constant?

I don't understand how we can accept these two sentences at the same time: Light speed is constant, therefore experiences no acceleration. On the presence of a gravitation field, light path is ...
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1answer
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Why aren't we all moving at the speed of light relative to photons? [duplicate]

Using basic logic.... We know speed and velocity is relative. My point is if we take our speed with respect to a photon moving in opposite direction we are practically moving at speed greater than ...
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What will the point of view be when you move faster than light in a medium?

In water the light become slower to the point where electron in water moving faster than light (in the same medium). So in electron frame of reference what will electron's point of view be? From what ...
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1answer
59 views

Question regarding the mass of an alpha particle when travelling at a speed approaching the speed of light [duplicate]

The speed of an Alpha particle is: 10^7 m/s. This is a speed approaching the speed of light. hence, should the (relativitic) mass of the Alpha particle vary?
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1answer
58 views

how photon gets accelerated instantaneously to speed of light? [duplicate]

i understand that the photon when emitted is already travelling in the speed of light but how can it go from 0 to speed of light instantaneously. is it because photon is a mass less particle and the ...
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How can we say that difference in energy between 99.99% and 100% of speed of light is infinite? [duplicate]

How is it not possible for a particle to attain 100% speed of light and what will happen if it attains the speed of light?
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1answer
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How can the speed and the mechanics of light be similar to the speed and the mechanics of gravity? [duplicate]

How can the speed and the mechanics of light be similar to the speed and the mechanics of gravity? Most say that light cannot escape a black hole. Then gravity cannot escape a black hole either, so ...
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Could gravity accelerate light? [duplicate]

Gravity causes anything with energy to accelerate toward the source. Black holes, for example, have such strong gravity that they pull in light and don't let any escape. But can acceleration still ...
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1answer
96 views

Take advantage of time dilation or create a warp drive? [closed]

It is my understanding that time dilation slows down perceived time relative to the outside of a given vessel as it approaches the speed of light. Does that not mean that the inhabitants of said ...
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4answers
831 views

Why only higher energy photons can affect atoms even though their speed is same? [closed]

I understood that a baseball moving at the cosmic speed limit can do lot of harm, but since photons are not comparable to a baseball so irrespective of their high speed they do not rip anything in ...
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1answer
40 views

Coordinate Time and Proper Time/Simultaneity [closed]

At close to the speed of light, clock A is running slower than "stationary" clock B. Does clock A enter the future time reference of clock B as it slows down? Trying to understand where the forward ...
1
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1answer
75 views

Relativity: easy spaceship scenario. easy questions [duplicate]

Your spaceship is traveling at 1/2*c and you approach Bob's spaceship going -1/2*c in the opposite direction. Relative to you, Bob is going the speed of light, and of course he has a giant ticking ...
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What prevents me to accelerate an object to near light speed in space?

As far my limited knowledge go, things in space aren't slow down unless something interferes with them, so what prevents me to build a spaceship powered by nuclear power that will keep accelerating ...
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53 views

Flagpole/shadow trig relationship question but accounting for real speed of light

So in high school everyone has solved the trig problem of relating the height of the flagpole (h), the length of its shadow (l), and the angle at which the sun rays are striking the flagpole (ϕ). ...
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How we are able to see stars in night, even if they are light years away from earth? [closed]

I am wondering, how we are able to see so much stars in the sky even though they are light years away from us. Even light take years to reach from those stars to earth? Then, how we are seeing those ...
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1answer
40 views

Extra mass due to near light like speeds [duplicate]

Why does mass seem to increase as you near the speed of light?
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1answer
36 views

How long will the light exist inside the sphere?

Ok, so let's say we have a very thick, but hollow, metal sphere. The inside of the sphere has a radius of 100 meters. The sphere also has a door that can be opened and closed and when closed makes an ...
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Speed of light, velocity limits and superluminal travel [closed]

I know that a massive object cannot reach the speed of light as it would require an infinite amount of energy to do so (though my knowledge of the reasons of this phenomenon is very limited). ...
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1answer
37 views

How soon would electrons start flowing once I closed a switch on a circuit that was one light minute away from the battery

In a circuit, how do electrons "know" when the circuit is closed? To my understanding, they do not start flowing unless the circuit is closed. How soon would they start flowing once I closed a ...
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1answer
81 views

Time dilation: linear or exponential or other?

As you near the speed of light, time slows for you relative to the world around you. So you would be traveling at more than one hour per hour. Is the rate of time slowing for you linear or exponential ...
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How fast is the speed of light in vacuum? [closed]

If we were to travel the speed of light how many times will we be able to orbit the earth in 1 hour? Also how long will it take to make 1 orbit at the speed of light?
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1answer
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How can we see the alien, who are travelling in light speed? [closed]

If aliens has the technology to travel in speed of light ,How can we see them with our 'below the speed of light' technology?. Because when we see that(!),definitely it will not be in its place.Is ...
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2answers
77 views

How does a flash of light appear to a high speed observer

Imagine two dark chambers separated by a light-proof partition each with a 30m high ceiling. Chamber A has a letter A painted in white on its black ceiling, chamber B has the letter B also in white on ...
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Speed of light and vision lag [closed]

A lot of the answers here are for the question below but the previous question has not been received well. So with the same question in mind, wouldn't the universe look different from different parts ...
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2answers
63 views

Why wasn't the theory that light's velocity depended on its source very popular?

Before special relativity, it was believed that light having a specific velocity meant it had to travel through something. My question is, why wasn't the idea that light depended on its source very ...
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3answers
72 views

Speed of electricity in cable [duplicate]

Movement speed of electricity in cable, is same as speed of light in space? In other words, electricity moves in usual electro cable aproximatelly 300 000 km/second ?
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35 views

Speed of Light with trains [duplicate]

Suppose that there is a train (train1) going at 100 km/h. The train is infinitely long. Suppose that there is an other train inside train1 (train2), which has a speed of 100 km/h also. So for a ...
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Feynman lectures on physics: The Michelson-Morley experiment

I have a problem understanding something. I'm reading FLP and here I don't understand why when the system is travelling, the light doen't make the same angle in the mirror C... if B and C are moving ...
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Does the Michelson-Morley experiment disprove gravitational waves?

I may be misunderstanding gravitational waves, but doesn't the idea of a gravitational wave imply that spacetime is a field or "medium" through which waves propagate at speed $c$? Was not this idea ...