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Liftetime of photons in matter

  1. May 2, 2007 #1
    Let's say we have a photon. When moving in vacum it has speed c. Due to mr Lorentz it will experience a time t=0 in its own referance frame no matter how far it travels. Is this right? So relative to itself the photon has a lifetime of zero?

    If so, how is this affected when it is not in vacum? I know we see it as moving slower because the dieletric constant is different, but how does the photon see it? Is this in anywayrelated to referance frames?
  2. jcsd
  3. May 3, 2007 #2


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    Firstly, photons do not truly have a definable reference frame. Secondly, photons always travel at c, they do not slow down in other mediums. The FAQ in the general physics forums would be a good place to start, there is an article in there, which addresses this misconception.
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