Scenario 1:(adsbygoogle = window.adsbygoogle || []).push({});

A photon is travelling straight towards a star. As it goes deeper in the star's gravitational well, its frequency grows, coresponding to an increase both in energy and momentum.

Scenario 2:

A photon is travelling towards a star, but not head on. As it passes the star, its path changes direction. This corresponds to a chang in momentum.

In both of these scenarioes, the momentum vector of the photon changes. In order for momentum to be conserved, the star will have to gain momentum in the direction of the photon.

This in turn means that there is a net increase in kinetic energy of the system (counting the photon's E=hf as kinetic). Therefore, the photon must have a potential energy with respect to the star, which shouldn't be extremely hard to calculate.

By the theorem [tex]\vec{F}=\nabla E_p[/tex], there is excerted forces between them; gravitational forces. This is equivalent to the photon curving the spacetime around it.

Now back to Scenario 1: Since energy and momentum is conserved, and the photon makes the star accelerate towards itself, does that not imply that the gravitational interaction propagates faster than light?

**Physics Forums - The Fusion of Science and Community**

The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

# Some thoughts on energy and momentum

Loading...

Similar Threads - thoughts energy momentum | Date |
---|---|

I Is my thought right or wrong? Light and a moving observer | Nov 17, 2017 |

I Thought experiment- Dropping a rope into a Black hole | May 23, 2017 |

B Triplet paradox and a thought | May 14, 2017 |

Thought experiment on potential energy | Apr 5, 2008 |

**Physics Forums - The Fusion of Science and Community**