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Questions tagged [special-relativity]

Questions regarding Albert Einstein's theory that posits, among other things, the equivalence of mass and energy.

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Can anyone one show how speeds greater than c cause a paradox on a space time diagram?

So according to Relativity, time moves at different rates for different observers, and distant observers will actually disagree on the order of events. Now from what I gather this gets sorted out for ...
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Dropping a pebble into a black hole [duplicate]

If one were to drop, say, a pebble, from a sufficient distance, into a black hole. The pebble would continue to accelerate until it were just short of the speed of light. In the next moment it's speed ...
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Are there any examples where the transverse doppler effect is applied in astronomy?

Are there any astronomical examples where the transverse doppler effect(Horizontal doppler effect) is applied (Derives a meaningful result)?
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What exactly is the cosmic definition of ‘now’ is?

There is no cosmic definition of now because of special relativity, because of rate at which time flows for a particular object depends upon your point of view and your velocity. For a rocket ...
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Do gravitational waves have distinct bands or parameters from which a source redshift can be inferred? [duplicate]

In optical astronomy, much (most?) electromagnetic radiation is emitted at well defined frequencies, and this can be used to infer a redshift for the source, and hence its recessional velocity, age, ...
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Information speed and our view of the cosmos

It is common knowledge that when we look at the stars we look back in time. And most stars are thousands of lightyears away from each other. The information that photons cary about the position of a ...
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787 views

Does Absolute Velocity Exist?

It seems everyone is on the same page about there being no "absolute velocity" due to the fact that everything is relativistic. However, this leaves me confused. This seems to be disconnected with the ...
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is this really true that speed of light is same as we look from different parts of universe?

According to the theory of relativity. The speed of light is same for every observer. But how can we know that this applies to more than a local region? What if light travelled to us from a distant ...
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Contradiction of special theory of relativity and quantum mechanics

Why do special theory of relativty (with the core message of E=mc²) and quantum mechanics do not go together? Why is the special theory of relativity in the quantum model not valid? Can anyone list ...
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Does a 4-manifold universe imply zero net energy?

If our universe is a 4-manifold (i.e. with every point in space-time already existing) does this imply that there is zero net energy (as net energy would do work and so change the universe)? If so, ...
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How old would I be if I travelled 1000 light years in one year

If I were to travel 1000 light-years, and witness only 1 year elapse in my frame of reference, how much time would have passed in the frame of reference of the Earth?
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What is length of the universe on lights perspective

According to Einsteins theory of special relativity, when something is travelling close to light speed, travel path is contracted. When the traveller is light itself, does it see the travel path ...
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Have we Observed Continuum Emission from Neutron Stars?

Have we detected continuum optical emission from any rotating neutron stars that do not have an accretion disk dominating the light? I ask because I know we have observed Doppler broadening of ...
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Relative black hole?

When some object is moving, it appears smaller and more massive. What if it's moving so fast it should become a black hole? Some calculations: Let observed radius $R_0\gamma$ ($R_0$ - radius at rest) ...
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How fast would we have to go for the red(/blue)shifts of galaxies ahead of us to differ from those behind us with statistical significance?

Here, we are looking for a statistically significant difference between the mean redshifts of galaxies ahead and those behind, with reference to a prior-specified direction. For example, suppose that ...
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Black hole darkness a result of gravity or temporal distortion?

Please correct me if I am wrong as I may have made some incorrect assumptions. Okay so we know that at some stage of "nearness to a black hole", light is no longer reflected back at us from the black ...
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What is the equation of state for a relativistic fluid/gas?

Say we have a relativistic fluid/gas, as we have in some astrophyical systems. Now let us write: $e$ - energy density in the fluid's rest frame. $P$ - pressure in the fluid's rest frame. $n$ - ...
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How long would it take to reach the edge of the reachable universe?

How long would it take to reach the current edge of the reachable portion of the universe, with the following bounds in mind: We figure out a way build a space ship to provide a constant 1 G ...
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Photon Paradox?

Imagine a photon reaching the Hubble Space Telescope today had originally been emitted from a star in the early universe 13 billion years ago. Einstein’s Special Relativity tells us, traveling at the ...
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1answer
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Light that travels eternally because of inflation?

What happens with electromagentic waves that are emitted into intergalactic space, but reach not any object because of inflation? Lets assume that photon A and photon B are emitted. Photon B hits ...
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How far into the future can we go by traveling close to a black hole?

If we sent someone on a path that passed as near as possible to a black hole without getting pulled in, how far into the future would they go due to time dilation? Let's assume the black hole is 5 ...
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Special Relativity as Applied to an Interstellar Starship?

I'm once again confused by the twin paradox. Let's say I am on an interstellar starship flying at 0.6c from a star 30 light years away from Earth to a star 50 light years away from Earth and 40 light ...
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Observing a point 13.82b ly away, 1b years ago

I understand that we can observe far away galaxies to get an idea how the universe looked like in the past. Assuming the universe is 13.82b years old, would it be correct to say that if we looked at ...
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Gravity assist: why is the velocity doubled? [closed]

The Wikipedia article has this terrestrial analogy: Imagine standing on a train platform, and throwing a [tennis] ball at 30 km/h toward a train approaching at 50 km/h. The driver of the train sees ...
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What is the bulk Lorentz factor?

When we are talking about relativistic motions, say from a relativistic jet, what is meant by the term "bulk Lorentz factor", and the bulk speed, $\beta$?
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Exoplanets and relativity [duplicate]

Ok, so I have read about how exoplanets are found using all sorts of genius methods. I also understand the further an obect in a telescope is the further into the past I am looking. So given that ...
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In theory, is there anywhere in the universe where velocity=0?

Earth is traveling at a certain velocity. Earth orbits the Sun at velocity X. The sun is orbiting the center of our galaxy at velocity Y. The galaxy is orbiting (something?) at velocity Z. On and ...
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time on earth compared to completely stationary in space

I recently started trying to understand the theory of relativity and I have the following question. Because earth is orbiting the sun at approx 67,000 mph (and its my understanding time slows down ...
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How would Special relativity explain past-present-future if thinking about 13-billion-light-years distanced objects

Halo. I'm interested in how would Special relativity comment on this: Suppose there are 2 objects, A and B. They are 13 billion light years away from each other. When the light from the B object ...
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What happens if two galaxies collide very quickly?

What would happen if two galaxies collided very quickly (e.g. at near the speed of light)? Would they mostly just pass through eachother unscathed, or would there be very energetic collisions that ...
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Age of the universe and time dilation

Given our knowledge and the standard cosmological model, we estimate that the age of the universe is about 13.7 billion years old. How much sense does it make to talk about the age of the universe as ...
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207 views

Thought experiment about the outskirts of the universe [closed]

Suppose I aim at some object that is 13 billion light years away from Earth. Let's assume I have a twin that pilots a ship that travels in infinite speed, meaning that he can reach that object and ...
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1answer
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If an object with mass were to somehow go the speed of light, would it destroy the whole universe? [closed]

Would an object with mass traveling the speed of light destroy the whole universe because it would have infinite energy / mass? According to wikipedia and other sources, it takes infinite energy to ...
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Would time go by infinitely fast when crossing the event horizon of a black hole?

If you were to fall into a black hole, my understanding is that from your reference point, time would speed up (looking out to the rest of the universe), approaching infinity when approaching the ...
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Length contraction of a star

Something moving toward or away from us will be contracted in length according to special relativity. As the M31 galaxy is moving toward us at great speed it's "depth" should appear slightly ...
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Did time pass more slowly in the past?

13 billion years ago, the universe was about 600 million years old according to many scientists. At that time, all matter in the universe would have to be closer, or in other words denser. Did time ...
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Does gravity slow or speed light up?

The speed of light in a vacuum is presumably the fastest speed possible. if gravity bends the course of light, does this imply that gravity the retards light so it is moving at a slower speed? If ...