# Questions tagged [speed-of-light]

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

1,863 questions
Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
76 views

### Is our physics and system of units based on time (second) or the speed of light?

The speed of light in vacuum is stated in our physics as a universal physical constant, c, when measured locally, in vacuum. The speed of light in vacuum, commonly denoted c, is a universal ...
120 views

### Undoing problems caused by setting $c = 1$ { or “Undoing $c = 1$” }

In the mathematical derivation of equations for physics, and involving wave propagation in particular, the propagation speed at the start of the derivation is often set to one (c = 1). I am working ...
192 views

### Why is the equation $E=mc^2$?

The equation $E=mc^2$ never made any sense to me. c is a constant (speed of light), therefore c squared is also a constant. We're not specifying any units so surely the equation should be reduced to ...
5k views

### How can I show that the speed of light in vacuum is the same in all reference frames?

I have regularly heard that the Michelson-Morley experiment demonstrates that the speed of light is constant in all reference frames. By doing some research I have found that it actually demonstrated ...
89 views

### Is it possible that the universe is not expanding faster than the speed of light? [closed]

What if the speed of light increases proportionately to the expansion of space? Is it possible that light traveling in the medium of space gets to travel faster if the medium is expanding? An analogy ...
50 views

### Has this group something to do with the cone of light?

Consider the group $V=(-1,1)$ with addition $+_{rel}:V\times V\to V$ defined as: $$v+_{rel}w=\frac{v+w}{1+vw}$$ This group is analogous to the relativistic velocities where the speed of light equals ...
78 views

### To Be Forever Young [duplicate]

It is clear from the Lorentz Parameters, applied to Einstein's Equations, that as velocity, v approaches speed-of-light, c, the denominator (1 - [v/c]) tends to zero; when v=c, time, t=0: time stops?! ...
179 views

### How does the Higgs field prevent the electron from going the speed of light?

Both the Photon and the Electron are point-like particles. Most massive particles can be thought of "bound collections of massless particles", but the electron assumed to be a "point particle with a ...
120 views

### Is it possible that “$c = 1$?” [duplicate]

Can c = 1 and if so, what does this mean for Physics? If you were to take any Physics equation, and let c = 1, will it work?
129 views

28 views

### How to travel between two stationary worlds in the least amount of proper time?

I was intrigued by this question about minimizing the travel time between two worlds that are at rest with respect to each other, and disappointed that the answer turned out to be trivial. However, I ...
18k views

### How did Einstein know the speed of light was constant?

I often hear the story of how Einstein came up to the conclusion that time would slow down the faster you move, because the speed of light has to remain the same. My question is, how did Einstein ...
3k views

### How to travel between two stationary worlds in the least amount of time? (time dilation)

Let's imagine there are two, isolated, stationary worlds in space (called A and B), very far apart from each other. I live on World A, and some aliens live on World B. I want to learn about the ...
32 views

### What will happen if a stick and a beam of light is to race [duplicate]

I don't know whether the question is asked before on not on this website as I can't found it anywhere so I have to ask. What will happen if a place a long stick with a length of a light year. Rather ...
126 views

### Does a static electric field travel at the speed of light?

Suppose we have a large area where the net electric field is zero. We place a charge q somewhere in this area. How long will it it take for another positive charge q' standing at a distance d from q ...
59 views

### Hypothetical video feed of time dilation

As a thought experiment, I'm imagining an observer on Earth video conferencing with an observer traveling at a high velocity away from Earth, or in a very large gravitational field relative to Earth. ...
33 views

### Light speed in vacuum over space and time [duplicate]

Is the light speed the same, constant, in all the universe locations? I mean, is it he same in the surface of the Sun compared with speed in space inter galaxies? Also: is light speed now the same as,...
135 views

### Do photons interact or not directly?

All I am asking about is photon (EM wavepacket) photon (EM wavepacket) interaction. I have read this question: If photon-photon interactions are impossible, how are higher harmonics generated? ...
182 views

### Relativistic Doppler Effect from source’s frame

Could someone please help me understand the derivation of the relativistic Doppler effect of light for objects moving away as derived from the source's reference frame? There’s no problem for me to ...
26 views

### Why frequency does not change when light passes through the denser medium? [duplicate]

as far as I noticed always people in physics have a predefined assumption that frequency is constant. whereas we know that the c is the outcom of product of wavelength and frequency. we have different ...
58 views

### Relativistic doppler efect

I got a little confused with the derivation of doppler effect for light as showed on wikipedia. The derivation states that when the source of light and the receiver are moving away from one another, ...
54 views

36 views

### What forces are experienced when someone running near the speed of light jumps?

Suppose I am running near the speed of light, say 0.87c so that my gamma factor is exactly 2. What forces will I and the ground experience if I jump? Imagine it's a normal two-footed jump where I take ...
63 views

### The facts of travelling at the speed of light [duplicate]

I’m travelling at the speed of light. If I hold a mirror in front of me could I see my face?
62 views

### Effects of Relativistic/Inertial Mass

What would happen to a ball of ice in a remote region of space if spun in a circle accelerating toward the speed of light? As the ball of ice approaches the speed of light, does it melt/sublimate as ...
62 views

### A thought experiment about time dilation

Suppose you are on am infinitely long train traveling on tracks and an atmosphere that has no resistance whatsoever. No this train is traveling at fractionally below the speed of light, and you are on ...
76 views

### Would close to light speed travel be possible if all atoms in the system were instantly given “forward motion”?

I have heard people say that based on our current understanding and ideas for possible/current technology no person would ever be able to even travel at a solid (70-80%) the speed of light because ...
74 views

### Which of these two is Einstein's greater contribution? [closed]

One, speed of light is constant and nothing can be faster than it. Two, space and time should not be viewed as two things. They are one thing called spacetime. Presumably, Einstein brought these ...
59 views

### CalTech has actually filmed light crossing a space of 1 mm of space. How?

In the video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Ys_yKGNFRQ, CalTech has a camera capable of filming the picoseconds it takes for light to travel 1mm in distance. It can do 10 Trillion frames per second....
89 views

### Is speed of light continuous when entering a medium?

I know that light has the speed $c$ in vacuum and speed $c/n$ in a medium with refractive index $n$. I wonder how this exactly happens - is there some kind of smooth transition? If so, on which scale?...