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Camera on Spacecraft Moving Near Speed of Light

  1. Jan 4, 2014 #1
    If a spacecraft moving near the speed of light has a camera set up inside observing the people in the spacecraft, and the camera is connected to a computer on Earth so that observers on Earth could watch the video that the camera sends, what would the people on earth see? Would they see the people on the spacecraft in slow motion?

    I find this paradoxical because the camera, which is an observer in the reference frame of the moving spacecraft should see the observers moving at normal speeds but observers on Earth (without the aid of the camera) see the people on the spacecraft moving in slow motion. But with the aid of the camera, the observers on Earth shouldn't see what the camera sees because otherwise by the time the spacecraft returns to Earth, there would be a time difference between what the camera sees and what the observers on Earth experience.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jan 4, 2014 #2


    Staff: Mentor

  4. Jan 14, 2014 #3
    DaleSpam explained the frame rate issue.
    Another issue is the foreshortening of the spacecraft. Since the camera is also foreshortened (from the Earth viewpoint), the images it collects will appear normal - both on the ship and on Earth.
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