Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Another basic question

  1. Nov 28, 2011 #1
    A stationary observer sees a moving train going at .6c.

    Does the moving train see the stationary observer going .6c from his frame of reference as well?

    I want to say yes but I'm not sure.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 28, 2011 #2

    ghwellsjr

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Yes, but if we want to use the standard configuration for the Lorentz Transform, we say that the train sees the observer moving at -0.6c.
     
  4. Nov 28, 2011 #3

    HallsofIvy

    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor

    Yes in terms of "velocity". In terms of the "speed", which is what relativity normally deals with, each sees the other as moving at 0.6c.
     
  5. Dec 1, 2011 #4

    ghwellsjr

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    The Lorentz Transform which is so very important in Special Relativity will not be reciprocal if you use 0.6c when transforming from one frame to the other and back again. If you use 0.6c when transforming an event from the first frame into the second frame then you must use -0.6c when you transform that event back into the first frame if you expect to get the same event you started with.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook




Similar Discussions: Another basic question
  1. The basic questions (Replies: 9)

Loading...