Hypothetical situation in which, for simplification, only some physical aspects are considered in order to further understand or reveal contradictions between the laws governing them.

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How does the Physics work for the Quantum Suicide thought experiment?

On page 5 of this paper written by Max Tegmark, Tegmark discusses a thought experiment called 'Quantum Suicide'. As far as I understand it, this experiment was created to show the experimental ...
3
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1answer
47 views

Graviton detector thought experiment

I was recently thinking of a thought experiment: Assumptions Graviton detectors can exist The equivalence principle will hold in the final theory of quantum gravity We can accelerate the graviton ...
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0answers
12 views

Force impact when lifting objects traveling at a relative velocity of 0

During a break my colleagues and I came up with the following Gedankenexperiment I would appreciate if you guys helped us find the solution for: Truck (weight 5t) traveling at 80 kph with a ...
0
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1answer
76 views

Apparent paradox concerning Heisenberg's uncertainty principle

I have just begun my Introduction to Quantum Mechanics course in my undergrad and I am trying to understand the uncertainty principle on a fundamental level. I think the best way to understand the ...
1
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1answer
63 views

Thought experiments about c [closed]

Poincarre had a brilliant thought about what if everything in the universe doubled in size , would anybody notice any difference or even be able to measure anything that can be compared with previous ...
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2answers
123 views

Classical physics in curved space

I'm trying to learn General Relativity. As a stepping-stone between classic (Newtonian) physics and complete relativity, imagine a universe where space is curved, but time is perfectly flat. Also, the ...
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0answers
17 views

Do we have the potential technology to harness the energy the Earth is constantly giving us? [duplicate]

Messing around with fun physics, and it got me thinking. I probably am not the only or the first one to think of it. I am wondering what more experienced physicists on this site can contribute to this ...
3
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1answer
104 views

How can a photon “stop”? What does its world line look like? [duplicate]

Einstein famously made a thought experiment: what would he see if he sat on a beam of light? His answer was -- it's impossible. Owing to him being a body with mass, he can never ever reach light speed ...
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2answers
44 views

How is Q superposition in Q information different from a classical dice?

Let's consider a dice with 1 or -1 on its faces, opposites faces adding up to 0. The point of this post is to relate the quantum coherence of a single qubit to something "weird", i.e., incapable of ...
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1answer
17 views

Gliders in a trailer

Everybody has heard I the old thought expirement of the birds in the trailer where the man hits the trailer the birds take flight and the trailer gets lighter. This has been disproven by the ...
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3answers
235 views

Are Newton's laws followed in non-inertial frame of references having all their objects and observer moving with same acceleration?

Consider a hypothetical scenario. In our universe there are two merry-go-rounds 1 and 2 and a distant planet. There is no other object having mass. There is a robot X on the planet. There are two ...
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2answers
241 views

Can something (again) ever fall through the event horizon?

Since I am more confused by the answers given in this site to the many variants and duplicates of this question, with some arguing that from the point of view of the falling observer, it happens in ...
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2answers
101 views

Thought experiment on light accumulation

Consider an object which is a spherical one-way mirror, and let's call it the "Sphere". For the needs of the thought experiment, suppose that: the Sphere is perfectly spherical the mirror is ...
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1answer
88 views

What's Wrong With This Quantum Analogy?

"Sometimes the idea of the quantum is compared to the units we use for money. A dollar can be divided into smaller units, where the cent is the smallest possible unit." A question I came ...
3
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1answer
450 views

Casimir effect for spinning Casimir plates

I recently thought of the following experiment. Let's say I have two plates in vacuum facing each other. Now, due to the Casimir effect, there will be some internal attraction between the plates. Now ...
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0answers
51 views

Conservation of momentum in Heisenberg's microscope

In working through Heisenberg's microscope, conservation of momentum for the photon and electron tells us that \begin{align} \frac{h}{\lambda}=\frac{h}{\lambda'}\sin\theta+p_x\,, \end{align} where ...
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3answers
338 views

Pendulum moving faster than speed of light

In classical mechanics, the period $T$ of a pendulum is given by $$ T = 2\pi\sqrt{\frac{l}{g}},$$ where $g$ is the gravitational field and $l$ the length of the rope attaching the bob to the pivot. ...
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3answers
110 views

Must we test whether e.g. $A=B$ and $A=C$ implies $B=C$ by experiment?

Chaper 10, conservation of momentum in "The Feynman Lectures on Physics" in the chapter entitled, the authors write that Suppose we know from the foregoing experiment that two pieces of matter, ...
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2answers
2k views

Can a mouse rotating a wheel violate conservation of angular momentum?

I have been thinking on the following problem. Part I. Imagine we have a mouse enclosed in a rigid box. We placed the box on a frictionless surface (ice might be a good example). Can the box start ...
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1answer
336 views

Feynman Lectures: Why a non-reversible weight lifting machine cannot lift higher that a reversible one?

Consider weight-lifting machines—machines which have the property that they lift one weight by lowering another. Let us also make a hypothesis: that there is no such thing as perpetual motion ...
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4answers
350 views

Taking selfies while falling, would you be able to notice a horizon before hitting a singularity?

I am generally interested in the role of "pings"(0a) between participants (a.k.a. "signal roundtrips"(0b), as familiar for instance from Synge's "five point curvature detector") in the determination ...
2
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0answers
35 views

Limits on the information obtained through optical measurements

Consider a Gedankenexperiment shown in the figure below. There are two lasers $S1$ and $S2$ with exactly the same specifications on paper. In practice, they are of course somewhat different but ...
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0answers
45 views

Pool full of Jell-O

Imagine I have filled my backyard swimming pool (8 feet deep) with a solid block of Jell-O. What would happen if I tried to swim in it? My understanding is that the viscosity of the "water" doesn't ...
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6answers
600 views

Black Body Golf Balls

The surface of a golf ball has about 35% more surface area (than a similar sphere) due to its dimples. So my question is simple, given identical radius, ideal black body material, and temperature: ...
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3answers
64 views

Is the Physics for extremely large and extremely small particles similar in any aspect? [closed]

Do the equations we use to describe natural phenomenon on a very large scale, work as well for describing natural phenomenon on an extremely small scale as well? Is there any correlation at all which ...
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1answer
44 views

is electromagnetic phenomena and particle behavior dependent on dark matter?

Dark matter permeates space and coalesce s in its own gravitational attraction. It neither absorbs or emits light or interacts well with baryonic matter. It deflects light on a path and is the sub ...
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2answers
48 views

Is this a possible monopole setup, or will it cancel out? [duplicate]

Suppose you have a ball that is covered in magnets, in which the North Pole of every magnet faces outward. Is this a monopole? Or at least "functions" as a monopole? And what will happen if you placed ...
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1answer
29 views

Simultaneous Decision/Motion

This is just a thought experiment I had and was wondering if any could give there input on it, Imagine we have to machines in the shape of a ball. When these machines are turned on, one machine will ...
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0answers
59 views

How did Lord Rayleigh find the volume fraction of argon to air?

In order to isolate for pure nitrogen, Lord Rayleigh and his colleagues took some air and removed oxygen, carbon dioxide, and water vapour, leaving behind what he believed to be pure nitrogen. In ...
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2answers
209 views

Special relativity mirror clock experiment inconsistency

Say I set up a relativistic mirror clock experiment in which a spaceship contains a set of mirrors with a photon bouncing between them. Say the photon's motion is parallel to the direction of motion ...
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2answers
298 views

Does the speed of light have a range of speeds due to medium-dependency?

An EM particle-wave propagates in a vacuum at a constant speed $c$, independent of the source/receiver but dependent on most mediums it moves through. Since the vacuum is a medium, and if logically ...
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1answer
141 views

Could gravity be repulsive at short distances?

I was wondering if it would be consistent with empirical data if gravity became extremely repulsive at short distances. For example (please bear with my use of classical formulas, I know little of ...
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3answers
216 views

How does potential energy work out for floating things?

Seeing a ship canal lift in TV spawned the following thought: "Oh my, this sure is a heavy ship and it can be lifted by simply adding water. What a marvellous machinery. After all, I could lift that ...
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3answers
408 views

What would happen to me if I was in the LHC while it was running? [duplicate]

This is possibly a stupid question, but one I have been always wondering. What would happen to me if I was in the center of the Large hadron Collider while it was running? Would the energy of the beam ...
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4answers
291 views

How would swimming in low gravity work?

Sorry I know very little of actual physics, I'm not looking for hard and fast numbers just a general idea of how the mechanics would work. For the sake of argument, say you were on a planet or moon ...
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1answer
63 views

What is the exhaustive set of experiments a quantum theory has to satisfy?

Any theory that is to explain the world correctly has to provide a mechanism by which the interesting results of quantum mechanics happen (e.g. diffraction patterns, momentum/position uncertainty, ...
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2answers
102 views

Relativity Paradox involving two charged particles

Suppose there are two charged particles separated by some distance $d$ both with an equal positive charge of $q$. The particles also have equal masses of $m$. $m$ and $q$ are chosen so the ...
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1answer
174 views

Thought Experiment: An object falling indefinitely under gravity?

So the other day, I devised this thought experiment: Consider an infinite tunnel, and you drop a coin of mass $m$ into it. Considering the effect of gravity to be applicable and neglecting air ...
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3answers
627 views

Thought Experiment - Poking a stick across a Black Hole's Event Horizon

The classical explanation of a black hole says that if you get to close, you reach a point - the event horizon radius - from which you cannot escape even travelling at the speed of light. Then they ...
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3answers
187 views

What would happen if you open a bottle of fizzy drink in a weightless environment?

On Earth, pouring a fizzy drink into a glass or opening a bottle, you see the gas start to condense out into bubbles which rise upwards. You can't pour a Coke into a glass on the ISS but you could (I ...
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6answers
2k views

Can you find the length of a pencil without a ruler or clock?

Edit: Assume you do have access to all sorts of instruments, but they are all shrunk in proportion. My real question is: If you are shrunken (or expanded) by a constant factor and put in a room ...
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1answer
63 views

Physics Riddle - Know Plant Earth [closed]

I hope it's OK to ask here, because it's pretty much as basic as physics can get. So here it is: I have a hot air balloon that can rise to any altitude I'd like, a precise watch, a sandbag, a weigh ...
2
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1answer
51 views

Subluminal speed when going in a circle around someone

Some time ago I thought about such situation: There are two people in the room. Both have synchronized watches on their wirsts. Then the person A starts running around person B with the speed of ...
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2answers
100 views

What's wrong with this way of thinking about greenhouses?

It's a clear day, the sun is shining, warming the ground to 29°. The air is at 26°; a breeze is blowing mixing the air so the temperature is fairly uniform: Now I section a bit of this scene off ...
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1answer
65 views

Viewing a Time-Dilated Space

I'm fascinated by space and physics but not exactly well-versed in them, so I'll try to keep this question as simple as possible. Imagine a person acting as an observer in a room with two large ...
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2answers
149 views

Why is a thought experiment a valid way to prove anything?

Isn't a thought experiment as subjective as you could make science be? Is it that since it is impossible with our current methods, we are simply skipping too many hurdles that would have to first be ...
2
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0answers
209 views

Testing Many-Worlds Interpretation (MWI) with a causality-violating configuration of “superluminal cables”

Suppose we managed to arrange a causality-violating transmission of data with hypothetical “superluminal cables” (SLC; see both links for respective descriptions) and expect, similarly to ideas ...
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2answers
84 views

Charge orbiting gravitational body [duplicate]

I am currently rather uneducated on the subject, but I was thinking of a general relativity thought experiment. Say I take a charge from infinity and give it velocity to orbit a planet in a circle. ...
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3answers
140 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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0answers
90 views

Does a mass gain inertia against movement in all directions as it approaches the speed of light?

If a mass moves along the x axis at near the speed of light, does it take as much energy to additionally accelerate the mass along the y axis as it does to accelerate it along the x axis by the same ...