Can information travel faster than light?

In summary, the speed of light is the maximum speed that information can travel. If you are trying to send a signal between two points that are a great distance away from each other, the speed of light is the maximum speed that you can send the signal.
  • #1
ABHIdAVIATOR
22
0
Theory of Relativity says nothing can exceed the speed of light. My question is:
Can any information be made to travel faster than 'c'?

suppose, i have a light torch of very high intensity which can be rotated on an axis(its stand). the light is made to fall on a wall(extending for millions of miles). the wall itself is millions of miles away from the light torch. now if i rotate the torch on its stand, the bright spot on the wall travels very fast. and, even for very minute changes in the angle, the spot travels thousands of miles. Can spot of light on the wall travel faster than c?

If yes, doesn't it violate our laws?
 
Physics news on Phys.org
  • #2
ABHIdAVIATOR said:
Can spot of light on the wall travel faster than c?
Sure, why not? Note that the moving spot of light is not a physical object (it's not really any kind of "object") and that it can't be used to send a signal (thus transmit information) between one spot on the wall and another.
If yes, doesn't it violate our laws?
Nope.
 
  • #3
Doc is right but what youre describing isn't breaking the SoL limit because it doesn't exceed it in any way.

Tachyon.
 
  • #4
Your example is similar to waves approaching a beach, not quite head on.
The point where the wave breaks on the beach moves along the beach at great speed,
but is not the motion of anything physical.
 
  • #5
To send information you must be able to produce two different results on receiving point that are consequences of choices you made.
In your experiment this is not possible: a person standing near the wall could do nothing to influence the traveling of the illuminated spot.
 
  • #6
Say we have two points on the wall (A and B) that are 10 light years apart. You are 6 light years from both A and B forming a triangle. If your laser is pointing at A and you start to turn the laser it will be 6 light years before the spot on the wall even starts moving. Now you turn your laser "instantaneously" to point in the direction of B. The photon leaving your laser that is now pointing at B will take 6 light years to arrive at B so the total time from when you decided to start turning the laser to the time the signal arrives at B is 6 years. Now if you see A launch a death ray towards B it will be 6 years before you are even aware that A has launched the death ray and another 6 years before your signal to warn B that he has an incoming attack. Your alert signal to B will arrive 2 years after he has been fried to a crisp by the death ray from A. :P
 
Last edited:

Related to Can information travel faster than light?

1. Can information travel faster than light?

According to Einstein's theory of relativity, the speed of light is the ultimate speed limit in the universe. This means that nothing, including information, can travel faster than the speed of light.

2. Is there any evidence that information can travel faster than light?

There is currently no scientific evidence that suggests that information can travel faster than light. Numerous experiments and observations have consistently shown that the speed of light is the maximum speed at which anything can travel.

3. What is the concept of causality and how does it relate to information traveling faster than light?

Causality refers to the concept that an effect cannot occur before its cause. If information were to travel faster than light, it would essentially be able to travel back in time and cause an event to happen before its cause, which goes against the fundamental principles of causality.

4. What are the implications of information traveling faster than light?

If information were to travel faster than light, it would have significant implications for our understanding of space and time. It would also challenge our current laws of physics and potentially open up the possibility of time travel.

5. Are there any theories that suggest information can travel faster than light?

There have been some theories proposed, such as quantum entanglement, that suggest the possibility of information traveling faster than light. However, these theories are still highly debated and have not been proven with empirical evidence.

Similar threads

Replies
10
Views
2K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
8
Views
1K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
4
Views
486
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
9
Views
1K
  • Special and General Relativity
2
Replies
40
Views
3K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
32
Views
2K
  • Special and General Relativity
3
Replies
98
Views
3K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
8
Views
2K
Replies
18
Views
2K
  • Special and General Relativity
Replies
6
Views
808
Back
Top