8B - 13_Relat_11.ppt - Special Theory of Relativity - 1905...

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Special Theory of Relativity - 1905 Albert Einstein Born: March 14, 1879, Ulm, Germany Died: April 18, 1955, Princeton, NJ Nobel Prize in Physics (1921) for the theory of the photoelectric effect.
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Motion is relative Relativity of motion: As a senior citizen was driving down his usual freeway, his cell phone rang. Answering, he heard his wife's voice urgently warning him, "Herman, I just heard on the news that there's a car going the wrong way on the 280 Freeway. Please be careful!" "It's not just one car," said Herman. "It's hundreds of them!"
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Excerpt from the original paper - Find the entire paper at http://www.fourmilab.ch/etexts/einstein/specrel/www/ The introduction and kinematics parts are worth reading to sense the simplicity of his approach. ON THE ELECTRODYNAMICS OF MOVING BODIES By A. Einstein - June 30, 1905 It is known that Maxwell's electrodynamics--as usually understood at the present time--when applied to moving bodies, leads to asymmetries which do not appear to be inherent in the phenomena. Take, for example, the reciprocal electrodynamic action of a magnet and a conductor. The observable phenomenon here depends only on the relative motion of the conductor and the magnet, whereas the customary view draws a sharp distinction between the two cases in which either the one or the other of these bodies is in motion. …. .
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Postulates of Special Relativity Einstein’s words ..Examples of this sort, together with the unsuccessful attempts to discover any motion of the earth relatively to the ``light medium,'' suggest that the phenomena of electrodynamics as well as of mechanics possess no properties corresponding to the idea of absolute rest. . . the same laws of electrodynamics and optics will be valid for all frames of reference for which the equations of mechanics hold good. 1 We will raise this conjecture (the purport of which will hereafter be called the ``Principle of Relativity'') to the status of a postulate , another postulate , which is only apparently irreconcilable with the former, namely, that light is always propagated in empty space with a definite velocity c which is independent of the state of motion of the emitting body . . . The introduction of a ``luminiferous ether'' will prove to be superfluous inasmuch as the view here to be developed will not require an ``absolutely stationary space'' provided with special properties, . .
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Another Einstein Quote: Intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them.
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ON THE ELECTRODYNAMICS OF MOVING BODIES By A. Einstein - June 30, 1905 “..If we wish to describe the motion of a material point, we give the values of its co-ordinates as functions of the time. Now we must bear carefully in mind that a mathematical description of this kind has no physical meaning unless we are quite clear as to what we understand by ``time.'' We have to take into account that all our judgments in which time plays a part are always judgments of simultaneous events . If, for instance, I say, ``That train arrives here at 7
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This note was uploaded on 04/10/2011 for the course PHYS 8B taught by Professor Catherinebordel during the Spring '10 term at University of California, Berkeley.

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8B - 13_Relat_11.ppt - Special Theory of Relativity - 1905...

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