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Quantum question

  1. Mar 28, 2005 #1
    If a baseball player driving a convertible in a straight line at 75 kmph and throws a ball the same direction at 50 kmph, the ball would be going about 125 kmph. but if one was traveling in a space ship going half the speed of light and fired a partical beam in the same direction going three-quaters the speed of light the particle beam be going 99.9999...% of the speed of light.
    What is the equation that would make both these
    statements true?
  2. jcsd
  3. Mar 28, 2005 #2


    User Avatar

    Staff: Mentor

    Your question has to do with relativity, not quantum physics, so I expect one of the moderators will pounce on this thread and move it over to the relativity forum.

    Nevertheless, to get an answer to your question, look up the relativistic "velocity addition" formula and apply it to both of your situations. That is, actually calculate the results. You'll see that for the baseballs, the exact relativistic result is sooooo close to the non-relativistic simple addition of velocities, that it's impossible to tell the difference, in practice.
  4. Mar 29, 2005 #3
    Thanks, I think I found what I was looking for in relative velocity. Half the time seems to be spent figuring out the right word, term, phrase or category.
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