Length contraction

  • Thread starter touqra
  • Start date
  • #1
touqra
287
0
If the length of an object could contract under length contraction, what about fundamental particles, like electrons, quarks, protons, etc? After all, an object is made up of a lattice/group of particles.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
Garth
Science Advisor
Gold Member
3,579
107
They all contract as observed by an observer moving relative to them.

The length-contraction/time-dilation is an artifact of that observer's space-time reference system. In their own frame of reference the "electrons, quarks, protons, etc" are not being squashed!

Garth
 
  • #3
touqra
287
0
Garth said:
They all contract as observed by an observer moving relative to them.
The length-contraction/time-dilation is an artifact of that observer's space-time reference system. In their own frame of reference the "electrons, quarks, protons, etc" are not being squashed!
Garth

Yes, that's what I wanted to ask. In our frame, we see length of objects being contracted. So, how about particles like protons, electrons etc? How would the traveling particles look like in our frame? After all, objects are made of particles. So, length contraction needs to be explained in terms of particles.

Secondly, consider a hydrogen atom, having an electron orbiting around a proton. This hydrogen atom travels close to speed of light, from what we observe. How does this change the wavefunction of the orbiting electron and also the electron's position expectation value?
 
  • #4
Ich
Science Advisor
1,931
1
It does not really change the wave function. It is the x- and t-coordinates that change. You could calculate the wave function in the rest frame and then transform the result to your frame.
 

Suggested for: Length contraction

  • Last Post
2
Replies
38
Views
1K
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
769
  • Last Post
3
Replies
78
Views
2K
Replies
52
Views
2K
Replies
6
Views
637
Replies
29
Views
745
Replies
1
Views
444
Replies
64
Views
2K
Replies
17
Views
778
Replies
166
Views
7K
Top