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Can Aspects of Relativity be Explained by the Higgs Field?

  1. Jul 24, 2015 #1
    I watched a Stephen Hawking series a few months after reading an article about the significance of the Higgs Field and throughout the entire Stephen Hawking thing I was plagued by the notion that some aspects of relativity, such as how as something speed up as it gains mass could be explained through how this something interacts with the Higgs Field. Am I just super naïve, or is their a legit connection between interaction with the Higgs Field and distortion of time, among other things.
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 24, 2015 #2


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    See this FAQ on why the notion of mass increase with relative velocity is not much used anymore:

    https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/what-is-relativistic-mass-and-why-it-is-not-used-much.796527/ [Broken]

    I am suspicious that you either misunderstand what Hawking said, or he was being a showman more than a physicist. Anyway, I think the notion is basically nonsense.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  4. Jul 24, 2015 #3
  5. Jul 25, 2015 #4


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    It can't. The interaction with the Higgs field is how we currently explain the nonzero invariant mass of certain particles (in the Standard Model without the Higgs field, all particles would have zero invariant mass). But invariant mass is, as the name says, invariant; it's not dependent on the speed of the particle.
  6. Jul 25, 2015 #5


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    I never understood the big hype about Hawking's public writings. The only really great book I know written by him is Hawking, Ellis, The Large Scale Structure of Space Time. The "Brief History" I didn't even finish to read. When he started talking about imaginary times as something else than a mathematical concept (Wick rotation in Q(F)T) or in the Matsubara formalism for equilibrium many-body QFT, I couldn't stand it anymore...
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