Horizontal Distortion

Main Question or Discussion Point

Why, when nearing the speed of light, do objects appear to be shrinking to someone in a different frame of reference?

I understand time dilation, but not the horizontal distortion.
 

Answers and Replies

rcgldr
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If an object is traveling towards an observer at near light speed, by the time the light from the near end of the object reaches the observer, the far end is much closer and the light reaches from the far end reaches the observer relatively sooner. I'm not sure if this is more than just an "optical" illusion under general relativity.
 

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