flash of light thought experiment, need explanationby marmot Tags: experiment, explanation, flash, light 

#1
Sep2411, 07:12 PM

P: 53

So suppose in frame K at x_1 a photon is emmited and its absorbed at x_2= x_1+L so, the photon in K has travelled a total distance of L. Now suppose we have frame K' moving at some velocity Beta*c. Why is it that in K' the distance travelled by the photon is different than L if the speed of light is constant? I did this problem and got that. I am scratching my head at this.




#2
Sep2411, 07:19 PM

Math
Emeritus
Sci Advisor
Thanks
PF Gold
P: 38,902

Because in K', the distance the photon traveled and the time in which it traveled are shorted by the same multiplier the Lorentz transform parameter.




#3
Sep2411, 07:20 PM

P: 53

I think that makes sense. So you need to fudge the time and distance interval so that the speed of light is constant, right?



Register to reply 
Related Discussions  
Thought experiment on the nature of light  Special & General Relativity  2  
A thought experiment: Light in a mirrored box..?  General Physics  18  
light speed thought experiment please help  Special & General Relativity  10  
Speed of Light Thought Experiment  General Physics  5  
'Speed of Light' Thought Experiment  Special & General Relativity  32 