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Ignorant person asking a science question. by twofatguys
Started on: 03-17-2011 02:08 PM
Replies: 34
Last post by: Doug85GT on 03-17-2011 07:57 PM
twofatguys
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:08 PM Click Here to See the Profile for twofatguysClick Here to Email twofatguysSend a Private Message to twofatguysDirect Link to This Post
Marked Religion to keep it civil, and "proper"

Regarding the speed of light.

Popular theory states that we cannot travel at the speed of light because time would slow down for us making it unreachable.

But doesn't light travel at the speed of light? Or is that the distance light travels in a year, not to be confused with the speed of light?

If light is made up of something, and can travel at the speed of light, why couldn't we?

Brad
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:14 PM Click Here to See the Profile for datacopClick Here to visit datacop's HomePageClick Here to Email datacopSend a Private Message to datacopDirect Link to This Post
A better question..

"What is Light?"

http://library.thinkquest.org/27356/p_index.htm

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Light

Once you have that question answered.. then you can ask: "What is the Speed of Light?"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_of_light

Then you can ask "What does the speed of light got to do with it?"

http://www.osti.gov/accompl...in/speedoflight.html
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Twilight Fenrir
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:18 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Twilight FenrirSend a Private Message to Twilight FenrirDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:

Marked Religion to keep it civil, and "proper"

Regarding the speed of light.

Popular theory states that we cannot travel at the speed of light because time would slow down for us making it unreachable.

But doesn't light travel at the speed of light? Or is that the distance light travels in a year, not to be confused with the speed of light?

If light is made up of something, and can travel at the speed of light, why couldn't we?

Brad


The way I understand it, the problem isn't that time slows down, according to e=mc^2, when you hit the speed of light, the object becomes infinitely massive...

The distance light travels in a year is, cleverly, called a lightyear, and that's just a measurement of distance, not speed.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Hank is HereClick Here to Email Hank is HereSend a Private Message to Hank is HereDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:

Or is that the distance light travels in a year, not to be confused with the speed of light?

Brad


FYI the unit of measure in distance is for what the speed of light can travel in one year is a parsec.
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Doug85GT
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Doug85GTSend a Private Message to Doug85GTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:

Marked Religion to keep it civil, and "proper"

Regarding the speed of light.

Popular theory states that we cannot travel at the speed of light because time would slow down for us making it unreachable.

But doesn't light travel at the speed of light? Or is that the distance light travels in a year, not to be confused with the speed of light?

If light is made up of something, and can travel at the speed of light, why couldn't we?

Brad



Nothing with mass can travel at the speed of light. The reason is because your speed is added to your mass. So the faster you go, the heavier you get. The heavier you get, the more energy it takes to accelerate. As you get closer to the speed of light, your mass becomes infinite. Infinite mass requires infinite energy to accelerate. The end result is that nothing with mass can ever go as fast as the speed of light.

These effects are not noticable until reaching speeds close to the speed of light. You will not be able to measure an increase in your mass traveling down the road at 70 mph.

Light, can go at such speed because it has no mass.
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twofatguys
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for twofatguysClick Here to Email twofatguysSend a Private Message to twofatguysDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Doug85GT:
Nothing with mass can travel at the speed of light. The reason is because your speed is added to your mass. So the faster you go, the heavier you get. The heavier you get, the more energy it takes to accelerate. As you get closer to the speed of light, your mass becomes infinite. Infinite mass requires infinite energy to accelerate. The end result is that nothing with mass can ever go as fast as the speed of light.

These effects are not noticable until reaching speeds close to the speed of light. You will not be able to measure an increase in your mass traveling down the road at 70 mph.

Light, can go at such speed because it has no mass.


I can understand that.

This is where I start having a real problem.

We can use light to move objects such as with a solar sail. So light can move mass. I know photons are supposed to not have mass, but they are there, so they have to take up some room. How can something that doesn't have mass exist?

Brad
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:38 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PyrthianClick Here to Email PyrthianSend a Private Message to PyrthianDirect Link to This Post
yup - as above - it is due to ever increasing energy needed to accelerate, which makes the matter seem infinitely dense

and - no, light does NOT actually always travel at the speed of light - it is usually slower. a great example is a prism. it breaks light up due to the speed changes while inside the prism.
same thing with a rainbow. light travels slower within water.
and, what light is made of still highly theoretical. heck - still not sure if it is wave based or ray based. experiments have showed it both ways. which makes little sense to common perspective. tho - electrons & other atomic components have also been shown to exist this way as well.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:40 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PyrthianClick Here to Email PyrthianSend a Private Message to PyrthianDirect Link to This Post

Pyrthian

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quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:
I can understand that.

This is where I start having a real problem.

We can use light to move objects such as with a solar sail. So light can move mass. I know photons are supposed to not have mass, but they are there, so they have to take up some room. How can something that doesn't have mass exist?

Brad


solar sail? if this is what I think it is - it is not light which is moving the object - it is all the other energy being put out by the sun - "solar wind" basicly
the sun being a huge continuous explosion means there is output.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:46 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PyrthianClick Here to Email PyrthianSend a Private Message to PyrthianDirect Link to This Post
if you have Netflix - stream the series "Turning Points in the Physical Sciences"
the last 2 episodes cover the above pretty well - but the whole series (5 episodes) is well worth watching
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Report this Post03-17-2011 02:59 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Doug85GTSend a Private Message to Doug85GTDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:


I can understand that.

This is where I start having a real problem.

We can use light to move objects such as with a solar sail. So light can move mass. I know photons are supposed to not have mass, but they are there, so they have to take up some room. How can something that doesn't have mass exist?

Brad



Light (electromagnetic radiation) is still energy. When it strikes a surface it will push very slightly against that surface. You can read more here:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation_pressure
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Doug85GT
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Report this Post03-17-2011 03:13 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Doug85GTSend a Private Message to Doug85GTDirect Link to This Post
This documentary is really good and explains Einstein's theories in everyday language:

[This message has been edited by Doug85GT (edited 03-17-2011).]

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Report this Post03-17-2011 03:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for UaanaClick Here to visit Uaana's HomePageClick Here to Email UaanaSend a Private Message to UaanaDirect Link to This Post
Well in theory Photons do have mass.. ( Mass: 0 <1×10−18 eV )

But then you start tripping down the line of Quantum Physics and debating Boson, string, and bubble theory
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Report this Post03-17-2011 03:28 PM Click Here to See the Profile for mike-ohioClick Here to visit mike-ohio's HomePageClick Here to Email mike-ohioSend a Private Message to mike-ohioDirect Link to This Post
Now to really confuse things:

http://www.iitk.ac.in/infoc...3/science_light.html

This was in 2000

A recent experiment* at NEC Research Institute, Princeton, N.J., U.S.A., clearly demonstrated superluminal propagation of a light pulse through a specially engineered medium. Superluminal implies faster than the speed of light, and in this experiment the peak of the light pulse arrives at the output end of the medium even before it has entered the medium.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:23 PM Click Here to See the Profile for fierofetishClick Here to Email fierofetishSend a Private Message to fierofetishDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:


I can understand that.

This is where I start having a real problem.

We can use light to move objects such as with a solar sail. So light can move mass. I know photons are supposed to not have mass, but they are there, so they have to take up some room. How can something that doesn't have mass exist?

Brad


Ummm...electricity? Same thing , or not? Can't see it, can't touch it...sure does exist though Magnetic forces?
Nick
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:25 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Tuna HelperClick Here to Email Tuna HelperSend a Private Message to Tuna HelperDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:


I can understand that.

This is where I start having a real problem.

We can use light to move objects such as with a solar sail. So light can move mass. I know photons are supposed to not have mass, but they are there, so they have to take up some room. How can something that doesn't have mass exist?

Brad


A better question is how can a photon that has no mass cause a solar sail to move? Without mass it has no inertia right?
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Jake_Dragon
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:27 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
Impossible is just a word to describe something that hasn't been done yet.
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datacop
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:30 PM Click Here to See the Profile for datacopClick Here to visit datacop's HomePageClick Here to Email datacopSend a Private Message to datacopDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Tuna Helper:


A better question is how can a photon that has no mass cause a solar sail to move? Without mass it has no inertia right?


How can a magnet #1 push magnet #2 away from itself without magnet #1 ever moving?

You're forgetting about wave energy. Magnetic waves are energy.. light waves are energy.. radio waves are energy. Given a sufficient amount of any of these, you can cook your dinner. Given that, capturing that energy and using it to drive linear motion doesn't seem that "difficult" (Difficult of course being a relative term).
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Tuna HelperClick Here to Email Tuna HelperSend a Private Message to Tuna HelperDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by twofatguys:

Popular theory states that we cannot travel at the speed of light because time would slow down for us making it unreachable.

Brad


My understanding is this, if one was to travel at near the speed of light, and look behind them, time would appear to slow down as the light would not enter your eye as fast as it would normally. If you were to look to the side things would appear normal, and if you look forward things would appear in fast forward. I believe that if you were to travel faster than light and look behind you you would see nothing.
Now, this is assuming that one were not traveling in any kind of vehicle. If you were, would things inside appear normal, while things outside appear fast or slow?
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:32 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PhilClick Here to Email PhilSend a Private Message to PhilDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Hank is Here:


FYI the unit of measure in distance is for what the speed of light can travel in one year is a parsec.


Actually a parsec is about 3 1/4 light years. A parsec is the distance at which 1 astronomical unit (approx 93 million miles) subtends 1 sec of arc._
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:34 PM Click Here to See the Profile for datacopClick Here to visit datacop's HomePageClick Here to Email datacopSend a Private Message to datacopDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by fierofetish:


Ummm...electricity? Same thing , or not? Can't see it, can't touch it...sure does exist though Magnetic forces?
Nick


Electricity is different from magnetic forces. Electricity is the act of outer electrons freeing themselves from one atom and moving to the next. Molecules which have "free" electrons on the outer shell make up good conductors (copper, steel, gold).. Molecules that don't have free electrons on the outer shell don't make good conductors (Glass, Plastics, etc).

Magnetic forces is wave energy..
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Report this Post03-17-2011 04:39 PM Click Here to See the Profile for jimbolayaClick Here to Email jimbolayaSend a Private Message to jimbolayaDirect Link to This Post
42

Jim
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Report this Post03-17-2011 05:04 PM Click Here to See the Profile for tbone42Send a Private Message to tbone42Direct Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by jimbolaya:

42

Jim


I concur.

Nothing travels faster than the speed of bad news.

[This message has been edited by tbone42 (edited 03-17-2011).]

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Report this Post03-17-2011 05:17 PM Click Here to See the Profile for twofatguysClick Here to Email twofatguysSend a Private Message to twofatguysDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by jimbolaya:

42

Jim


Right now this one makes the most sense to me.

From a layperson's point of view, it reads like a group of people made up a rule, and went with that. But there are three or four groups, and each one has a different set of rules.

Then if something happens to break one of those rules, all the groups change just a bit.

Am I getting that right?

Brad
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Report this Post03-17-2011 05:36 PM Click Here to See the Profile for ZebSend a Private Message to ZebDirect Link to This Post
Pretty much. We don't know what we don't know. We just pretend we do.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 05:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for newfSend a Private Message to newfDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Tuna Helper:


My understanding is this, if one was to travel at near the speed of light, and look behind them, time would appear to slow down as the light would not enter your eye as fast as it would normally. If you were to look to the side things would appear normal, and if you look forward things would appear in fast forward. I believe that if you were to travel faster than light and look behind you you would see nothing.
Now, this is assuming that one were not traveling in any kind of vehicle. If you were, would things inside appear normal, while things outside appear fast or slow?


Isn't this also the whole traveling back in time theory? The faster you go the slower time is to you as an individual up to the speed of light. IF one could somehow travel faster than light time would (to them) go backwards. In theory that is.

I've always liked this explanation From Carl Sagan:
 
quote
NOVA: How is the speed of light connected to time travel?

Sagan: A profound consequence of Einstein's special theory of relativity is that no material object can travel as fast as light. It is forbidden. There is a commandment: Thou shalt not travel at the speed of light, and there's nothing we can do to travel that fast.

The reason this is connected with time travel is because another consequence of special relativity is that time, as measured by the speeding space traveler, slows down compared to time as measured by a friend left home on Earth. This is sometimes described as the "twin paradox": two identical twins, one of whom goes off on a voyage close to the speed of light, and the other one stays home. When the space-traveling twin returns home, he or she has aged only a little, while the twin who has remained at home has aged at the regular pace. So we have two identical twins who may be decades apart in age. Or maybe the traveling twin returns in the far future, if you go close enough to the speed of light, and everybody he knows, everybody he ever heard of has died, and it's a very different civilization.

It's an intriguing idea, and it underscores the fact that time travel into the indefinite future is consistent with the laws of nature. It's only travel backwards in time that is the source of the debate and the tingling sensations that physicists and science-fiction readers delight in.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 06:12 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Gokart MozartClick Here to visit Gokart Mozart's HomePageSend a Private Message to Gokart MozartDirect Link to This Post
How much energy does it take to move an object to light speed in a weightless environment?
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Report this Post03-17-2011 06:54 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Gokart Mozart:

How much energy does it take to move an object to light speed in a weightless environment?


If you have no mass to push against how do you move?
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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:26 PM Click Here to See the Profile for PhilClick Here to Email PhilSend a Private Message to PhilDirect Link to This Post
mass and weight are two different animals.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:30 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Jake_DragonSend a Private Message to Jake_DragonDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Phil:

mass and weight are two different animals.


Tell that to my ass
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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:36 PM Click Here to See the Profile for BoondawgClick Here to Email BoondawgSend a Private Message to BoondawgDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Jake_Dragon:


Tell that to my ass


Or my wife.....

------------------
And they said one to another, "Behold, for here comes the dreamer. Come now, let us slay him and we shall see what then will become of his dreams." ~ Genesis 37: 19-20

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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:45 PM Click Here to See the Profile for maryjaneSend a Private Message to maryjaneDirect Link to This Post
 
quote
Originally posted by Zeb:

Pretty much. We don't know what we don't know. We just pretend we do.


We don't even know that we don't know we don't know.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:47 PM Click Here to See the Profile for maryjaneSend a Private Message to maryjaneDirect Link to This Post

maryjane

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quote
Originally posted by Phil:


Actually a parsec is about 3 1/4 light years. A parsec is the distance at which 1 astronomical unit (approx 93 million miles) subtends 1 sec of arc._


Anyone who has ever made the Kessel Run knows that.
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Report this Post03-17-2011 07:57 PM Click Here to See the Profile for Doug85GTSend a Private Message to Doug85GTDirect Link to This Post
Time and space are part of the same fabric. The faster you move through one, the slower you move through the other. Sitting in front of your computer, you are moving through time at the speed of light but are stationary in space (not counting the movement of the earth, solar system, galaxy etc.). As you move faster through space, your speed in time slows down. When you near the speed of light, time is nearly at a standstill.

This has some other strange implications. Say you are going 99% the speed of light and a light beam goes past you. How fast is the beam of light moving past you? Answer: at the speed of light. It will appear to be moving at its same speed because time has slowed down for you by 99%.

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