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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Nothing can exeed the speed of light.
    #2100050 - 11/13/03 04:08 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

So someone please explain where this scenario breaks down...

Imagine a tube with spheres filling it up. When you put a sphere in one end one falls out the other side. This happens simultaneously because there is only so much space inside the tube. Now make the tube 1 light year long and filled with spheres. When I put one sphere in one side, a sphere falls out the other side at the same time right? The sphere did not travel the distance but the information that a sphere was pushed into the tube at the other end was transmitted instantly.

Where does this break down?

I just thought of what the problem is but I'm curious to see the responses. If there are any.


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InvisibleRunDMT
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2100140 - 11/13/03 04:50 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Speed of thought.


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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: RunDMT]
    #2100240 - 11/13/03 05:33 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

It occurred to me that the amount of energy it would take to push them through would be infinite. even if you could use photons for the spheres.


On second thought mayber not. There would be a finite amount of particles in the pube requiring a finite amount of enery to get them moving.


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Edited by mntlfngrs (11/13/03 08:51 AM)


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InvisibletrendalM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2101092 - 11/13/03 12:06 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

The ammount of energy needed wouldn't be infinite.

But the time required for the energy to transmit down the tube would require a year of time (if the tube was a light-year long).

As you push the one sphere in, it presses against the next sphere and energy is transfered into that sphere. The chain flows down the tube to the other end, but not faster than the speed of light. I think there would be some compression of the spheres as well (over such a long distance) that would begin at the entrance to the tube and flow as a shock-wave down the tube (but again, not at the speed of light).


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: trendal]
    #2102237 - 11/13/03 05:06 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

What trendal said....!

On molecule level(molecules can't exceed the speed of light  :smirk:):

If you push the sphere, the molecules on the edge of the sphere will move and push other molecules in the sphere, these molecules will push other molecules==> chain reaction. It's a wave of movement in de spheres, but the wave can never exceed the speed of light. 


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OfflineLightningfractal
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2102268 - 11/13/03 05:16 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Ok then let's say it isn't spheres in a tube, but one single steel rod one light year long. In space there is no friction, so any ammount of energy can move the rod. Therefore, you can push the rod one foot, and the other end of the rod has travelled one foot, one light year away. I see no way of escaping the reality that this equals an instantaneous transfer of information one light year away.

Very interesting thread, worthy of S$P attention.


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]
    #2102311 - 11/13/03 05:36 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

You didn't read what I and trendal said or you don't understand what we said.


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OfflineLightningfractal
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2102345 - 11/13/03 05:47 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

No, I read it. So in the case of the steel rod, I guess you'd say that the molecules in the rod would move in a wave too? That's true I would think, yes.

Now consider this, what would happen if a spaceship travelling at 10,000 miles per hour turns on its "headlights"? Would the light emitted by these headlights be travelling at the speed of light relative to the ship? And if so, wouldn't that light be travelling at a rate of speed equal to the speed of light plus 10,000 miles per hour relative to a stationary observer?


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]
    #2102366 - 11/13/03 05:51 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

You had better start studying relativity. It's been too long since I had it in Physics, so I'm not going to try and explain.


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: oneducktwoducks]
    #2102376 - 11/13/03 05:53 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

No I understand it but I can't remember which way it goes.
I mean how often do you have to discuss relativity to get on a bus or get into a movie...

So even the energy transfer through the rod would progress as a shockwave, is that what you mean?


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: blink]
    #2102397 - 11/13/03 06:02 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]

I haven't really thought about the rod/wave thing. I know the scenario is wrong, but I don't know how to argue against it on a technical basis.


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: blink]
    #2102401 - 11/13/03 06:04 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

> If it was a solid mass that wouldnt change anything?

No, doesn't matter, molecules in a solid have much space between each other.

> My understanding is that the transfer of energy isn't bound by the speed of light,

Transfer of energy is bound to the speed of light. Nothing is instant(according Einstein).

>and if it was, the rod would either stretch or compress until the energy made it's way down the line...

True!

"Now consider this, what would happen if a spaceship travelling at 10,000 miles per hour turns on its "headlights"? Would the light emitted by these headlights be travelling at the speed of light relative to the ship? And if so, wouldn't that light be travelling at a rate of speed equal to the speed of light plus 10,000 miles per hour relative to a stationary observer?"

:smile:

Now it does get interesting. That's food for the mind. Read about Einstein. It has to do with relativity. I can't explain it because it's pretty hard to understand. 


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2102431 - 11/13/03 06:15 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Here is a MODEL of what would happen into an iron rod when you push it.

The red spheres are iron-particles(ions) in the iron rod:



The red spheres can't exceed light speed.... see what happens?


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OfflineToxicManM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]
    #2102521 - 11/13/03 06:42 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Now consider this, what would happen if a spaceship travelling at 10,000 miles per hour turns on its "headlights"? Would the light emitted by these headlights be travelling at the speed of light relative to the ship? And if so, wouldn't that light be travelling at a rate of speed equal to the speed of light plus 10,000 miles per hour relative to a stationary observer?



No. The measured velocity of the light beam to both observers will be the same.


Here's a thought experiment that might help you get the idea:

Suppose that the universe came into being at a single point, that at the moment it came into being there was emission of a spherical wave front of light, and we will consider that spherical wave front to be the boundary of the universe. Everything expands outward from the original center point. Allow a great deal of time to pass - say, 15 billion years.

Where is the center of the universe? At any point within the universe, if you measure your distance to the boundary in all directions, your measurements will say that you are at the center. Also, at any point within the universe, you will see that everything else is moving away from you, and the relative velocity of each thing will be proportional to the distance they are from you.


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Offlinestudent
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2102593 - 11/13/03 07:01 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Here is a good way to think about it:

You turn on the light switch. And "instantly" the lights turn on. All it takes is for the switch to be flipped and the circuit to be closed. One electron pushes the next, and so one. The time that it takes for the lights to turn on, is the time that it takes for the closest electron to move. The electrons do not move at the speed of light from the switch to the light. They move at their drift velocity over the whole length of the wire. It does not matter if the light is next to you or a light year away.
---
And for the ship turning on its lights. The light from the space ship moves at the speed of light in a vacuum, c. Since c is the "universal speed limit", the speed of the ship has no effect on the speed that the light travels. Even if the ship was moving backwards, or the lights were on the rear of the ship.
---
If anything were to move faster than the speed of light, it would effect causality. The effect would be proceed the cause.
---
If you want to learn more about this kind of stuff, I suggest reading Hyperspace by Michio Kaku.


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Offlineummikko
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]
    #2102620 - 11/13/03 07:10 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Lightningfractal said:

Now consider this, what would happen if a spaceship travelling at 10,000 miles per hour turns on its "headlights"? Would the light emitted by these headlights be travelling at the speed of light relative to the ship? And if so, wouldn't that light be travelling at a rate of speed equal to the speed of light plus 10,000 miles per hour relative to a stationary observer?




Think about this: If you point a flashlight in one direction and another flashlight 180 degrees from the first one, and look at the situation from the perspective of a light particle emitted from the first flashlight, then a light particle emitted from the second flash light would travelling at 2X the speed of light. Still, the particle is travelling from its source at the speed of light.

The point is this: There is no central spot in space to witch the speeds of all moving things are measured against. The spaceship isn't travelling at 10,000 miles per hour, it's travelling at 10,000 miles per hour in relation to something (like moving 10,000 miles away from earth in an hour). If there was comet moving in the same direction as the spaceship at the same speed, and there was a person sitting on top of the comet, then from the person's perspective the spaceship wouldn't be moving at all.

Second point: The speed of light can be exceeded by quantum teleportation. No, I'm not talking about science fiction.
I won't go explain it here because it's pretty complicated, so read about it here:

http://www.research.ibm.com/quantuminfo/teleportation/
http://www.geocities.com/grymse/quantum.html
http://www.aip.org/physnews/graphics/html/teleport.htm


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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: ummikko]
    #2103444 - 11/13/03 10:45 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Entangled pairs, There are a lot of interesting possibilities if we can harness their potential. The teleportation aspect or teleportation as it is normaly thoughtof is not realy what happenas with entangled pairs though. At least tpo my understanding. But they can transmitt information. If we could create matter from energy in such a way as to be able to make flesh and bone from available energy using a blueprint, and if we could encode the life memory and consienceness into it, we might have a kind of teleportation but it would more resemble a copy process. Of course we would have to send one half of the entangled pair to the destination via a ship taveling within the restrictions of normal space.

If we could learn to transfer the essance of a person into binary data and reconstitute that person fron the data, we could start to colonize the universe. I see a future where we will begin by decreasing the risk of extinction by colonizing at least two other civilizations in the solar system. Then reaching out to the nearest viable system with our entangled pairs device. This would be the longest stage as we wait for the ship to reach destination. Imagine a device you could walk through and be deconstructed into binary data, trans mitted via entagled pairs and reconstructed an a ship that is on its way to a new gallactic colony. Once the remote terminal was set up, thousands of colonists could instantly be there to start a colony.

Geez, I think I'm reading to much RAH and watching to much Stargate and shit.


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Offlinemonoamine
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2103791 - 11/13/03 11:58 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Imagine a tube with spheres filling it up. When you put a sphere in one end one falls out the other side. This happens simultaneously because there is only so much space inside the tube. Now make the tube 1 light year long and filled with spheres. When I put one sphere in one side, a sphere falls out the other side at the same time right? The sphere did not travel the distance but the information that a sphere was pushed into the tube at the other end was transmitted instantly.





By the time the tube got filled up it would take too much energy to push the first object (even if it's just a sub atomic particles) to get the chain reaction started. This intial energy would approach the energy needed to propell something the speed of light.

Short answer: this thought experiment is probably physically impossible in the actual universe.


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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: monoamine]
    #2103838 - 11/14/03 12:06 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

That is what I was thinking at first but after some thought I think that there are a finite amount of particles and therfore a finite amount of energy required.


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InvisibletrendalM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: student]
    #2104020 - 11/14/03 12:47 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

You turn on the light switch. And "instantly" the lights turn on. All it takes is for the switch to be flipped and the circuit to be closed. One electron pushes the next, and so one. The time that it takes for the lights to turn on, is the time that it takes for the closest electron to move. The electrons do not move at the speed of light from the switch to the light. They move at their drift velocity over the whole length of the wire. It does not matter if the light is next to you or a light year away.

The electrons are not moving along the wire while the switch is closed. There is a "pressure" (voltage) of electrons on the hot side of the switch. When you close the switch, the pressure is released and begins to push electrons down the wire. But the electrons can't all start moving at the same time. The exact same thing applies here as with the balls in the tube (except here it is the distance between the electrons which is fluctuating and creating a wave).

The principle behind all this is that no information can travel faster than light, according to Relativity.

For the light to turn on instantly when you flip the switch, some "information" would be transfered through space faster than light, which is not possible.

This is the case because force carrying particles move at the speed of light. Light is, after all, just photons and waves in the ElectroMagnetic Force (EM). So if light travells at 300,000 m/s then the force-carrying particles for the EM force must be what is moving at that speed.

This is true for the other three fundamental forces, they all travel at the speed of light.

So no "force" that you use to push on something will cause something far away to move before the "signal" can get there at light-speed.

In fact for anything above quantum-atomic levels (force-carrier particles themselves) the information travels at significantly lower than the speed of light, due to friction and such occuring.


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: ummikko]
    #2104041 - 11/14/03 12:53 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Think about this: If you point a flashlight in one direction and another flashlight 180 degrees from the first one, and look at the situation from the perspective of a light particle emitted from the first flashlight, then a light particle emitted from the second flash light would travelling at 2X the speed of light. Still, the particle is travelling from its source at the speed of light.

No, from the point of view of a light particle emitted from flashlight1 the particles from flashlight2 are moving away at the speed of light.

Relativity and light-speed velocities completely change the physics of low-speed reality.


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OfflineBaby_Hitler
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2104702 - 11/14/03 04:00 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Actually the balls couldn't move any faster than the speed of sound in whatever material the balls were made of.


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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Baby_Hitler]
    #2104803 - 11/14/03 04:41 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

eh? sound? in space?


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2104827 - 11/14/03 04:50 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Now make the tube 1 light year long and filled with spheres.




The spheres are made of matter I presume. If they are iron balls, then the wave would travel down it at the speed of sound in iron.


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Baby_Hitler]
    #2104875 - 11/14/03 05:07 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

I don't seee what sound has to do with it. Energy is not bound by sound in any was. Light is energy that is a wave (sometimes anyway) and it traveles at the speed of light.


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InvisibleRunDMT
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2104879 - 11/14/03 05:08 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Stop the bickering. I already owned this discussion with the Speed of Thought theory. :wink:


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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2104885 - 11/14/03 05:10 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

It breaks down when you want it to. You decide what reality you live in.

If you like to read, this article has some good references that will help you to break free from this idea.

http://www.aei-potsdam.mpg.de/~mpoessel/Physik/FTL/tunnelingftl.html

Joshua


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Offlineummikko
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: trendal]
    #2105127 - 11/14/03 07:41 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

trendal said:
Think about this: If you point a flashlight in one direction and another flashlight 180 degrees from the first one, and look at the situation from the perspective of a light particle emitted from the first flashlight, then a light particle emitted from the second flash light would travelling at 2X the speed of light. Still, the particle is travelling from its source at the speed of light.

No, from the point of view of a light particle emitted from flashlight1 the particles from flashlight2 are moving away at the speed of light.





I don't get this. As both particles are moving at the speed of light in opposite directions, their distance from each other has to grow at twice the speed of light. If this distance was growing only at the speed of light, then the particle's distance from the flashlight (witch is not moving) would be increasing at half the speed of light, which is impossible because the speed of light in a vacuum is constant.

Am I wrong?


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: ummikko]
    #2105135 - 11/14/03 07:53 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

There is an experiment that shows that microwaves can travel faster than the speed of light, though they are unable to explain why. Something to do with quantum tunneling, if I remember correctly. A brass rod, about a foot long, is set on a bench. A microwave transmitter is put on one end of the rod, and a receiver on the other. When high energy microwaves are shot into the rod, some of them come out the other end. If you measure the time it takes for the microwaves to traverse the rod, they have traveled faster than the speed of light in a vacuum.

Also, experiments with quantum entaglement and electron spin have had some interesting results, similiar to the above.

> I don't get this. As both particles are moving at the speed of light in opposite directions, their distance from each other has to grow at twice the speed of light.

It is all about prespective. Depending upon where you view the system from, the results will appear different.

For example, if you are on a train, moving down the tracks, and you toss a ball up in the air and catch it, what path did the ball follow? It went straight up and then back down. But... what if you are standing beside the train watching your friend toss a ball up and catch it... because the train is moving, the ball will take a curved path, up and down as it moves forward.


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Seuss]
    #2105190 - 11/14/03 08:40 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

There is an experiment that shows that microwaves can travel faster than the speed of light, though they are unable to explain why. Something to do with quantum tunneling, if I remember correctly. A brass rod, about a foot long, is set on a bench. A microwave transmitter is put on one end of the rod, and a receiver on the other. When high energy microwaves are shot into the rod, some of them come out the other end. If you measure the time it takes for the microwaves to traverse the rod, they have traveled faster than the speed of light in a vacuum.



That's correct, but few scientists accept this and it has never reproduced(correct me if I'm wrong)

ummikko, read something about Einstein and relativity. It's not easy to understand and it's not "logical". ( http://www.astronomynotes.com/relativity/s1.htm http://einstein.stanford.edu/content/education/EducatorsGuide/Frame.html )


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2105200 - 11/14/03 08:50 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Special Edition of Scientific American: The edge of physics
Special Edition of Scientific American: Time

^^^^ Very interesting to read! You need to know something about science and physics because it's not easy.


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OfflineAnnomM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Annom]
    #2105209 - 11/14/03 08:56 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

> The spheres are made of matter I presume. If they are iron balls, then the wave would travel down it at the speed of sound in iron.

True! :smile: the speed of sound in iron is totally different from the speed of sound in air. Very good comparison :thumbup: 


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Offlineeve69
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2105237 - 11/14/03 09:14 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

mntlfngrs said:
So someone please explain where this scenario breaks down...

Imagine a tube with spheres filling it up. When you put a sphere in one end one falls out the other side. This happens simultaneously because there is only so much space inside the tube. Now make the tube 1 light year long and filled with spheres. When I put one sphere in one side, a sphere falls out the other side at the same time right? The sphere did not travel the distance but the information that a sphere was pushed into the tube at the other end was transmitted instantly.

Where does this break down?

I just thought of what the problem is but I'm curious to see the responses. If there are any.







This is like that infinite hotel analogy where the infinity of rooms are all booked and yet a new guest arrives. Where do you place him?


Anyway, theories of light are always changing. There's one now that light may be slowing down since the BB.


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: eve69]
    #2105246 - 11/14/03 09:22 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

> That's correct, but few scientists accept this and it has never reproduced(correct me if I'm wrong)

It is very easy to reproduce the results. The problem/debate is that what gets through is nondeterministic... is this information, or noise. You can pass a modulated wave through the rod and can hear music when you demodulate it, but it sounds like an old scratchy record.


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Offlinemntlfngrs
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: Seuss]
    #2105253 - 11/14/03 09:25 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Who cares how it sounds as long as you can determin a 1 or 0 from it. And if you can pass anything then that shouldn't be a problem.


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Be all and you'll be to end all


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: mntlfngrs]
    #2105310 - 11/14/03 09:48 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

> Who cares how it sounds as long as you can determin a 1 or 0 from it.

Because scratchy sound is indicative of information loss. You can determine a 1 or a 0, but not every time.

Further references:

http://www.nature.com/nsu/000601/000601-5.html
http://focus.aps.org/story/v5/st23
http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/abs_free.jsp?arNumber=250129
http://www.physics.berkeley.edu/research/chiao/research.html




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OfflineAnnoA
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Re: Nothing can exceed the speed of light. [Re: Lightningfractal]
    #2105507 - 11/14/03 10:50 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

Quote:

Lightningfractal said:
Now consider this, what would happen if a spaceship traveling at 10,000 miles per hour turns on its "headlights"? Would the light emitted by these headlights be traveling at the speed of light relative to the ship? And if so, wouldn't that light be traveling at a rate of speed equal to the speed of light plus 10,000 miles per hour relative to a stationary observer?




No, but the color of the emitted light would change depending on the standpoint of the observer.
Light behaves as a wave, same as sound. Thus the Doppler shift comes into effect in this case.
http://zebu.uoregon.edu/~soper/Light/doppler.html
http://csep10.phys.utk.edu/astr162/lect/light/doppler.html



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InvisibletrendalM
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: ummikko]
    #2105677 - 11/14/03 12:06 PM (17 years, 11 months ago)

I don't get this. As both particles are moving at the speed of light in opposite directions, their distance from each other has to grow at twice the speed of light. If this distance was growing only at the speed of light, then the particle's distance from the flashlight (witch is not moving) would be increasing at half the speed of light, which is impossible because the speed of light in a vacuum is constant.

At near light-speed velocities, spacetime appears warped significantly. Most people are familiar with Time Dilation involved with near-lightspeed travel: that time slows down to an eventual halt at the speed of light. There is also a mass increase and a contraction in the length dimension (Lorentz contractions, if I remember correctly).

This is the essence of Relativity. Your thought is actually the same thought that led Einstein to his discovery of Spetial Relativity. He Thought about what it would be like to travel along side a wave of light, and how the wave would appear if one were to travel beside it at the speed of light.

What he eventually realized is that no matter how fast you travel, the wave of light still moves by you at the speed of light.


--------------------
Once, men turned their thinking over to machines in the hope that this would set them free.
But that only permitted other men with machines to enslave them.


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OfflineSeussA
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Re: Nothing can exeed the speed of light. [Re: trendal]
    #2108663 - 11/15/03 09:44 AM (17 years, 11 months ago)

> (Lorentz contractions, if I remember correctly)

You do.


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