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I am an amateur in the realm of relativity, but I think I grasp the basics. Here is my question: If you are travelling in a space ship away from earth near the speed of light, how would you in the space ship perceive your clock to be moving? I believe that since in your frame of reference, the Earth is moving away from you, so if you could look at a clock on Earth from your space ship it would slow down, therefore making your clock faster by comparison. Is this correct reasoning? On the other hand an observer on Earth would see you and your spaceship moving from his/her frame of reference and see the spaceship clock moving slower. My ultimate question is will the observer in the spaceship really see his clock move faster with respect to the Earth clocks? Thanks for your help. I have a dinner bet on this so don't let me down!

2. On 2002-02-15 06:00, Ragnar wrote:
I am an amateur in the realm of relativity, but I think I grasp the basics. Here is my question: If you are travelling in a space ship away from earth near the speed of light, how would you in the space ship perceive your clock to be moving? I believe that since in your frame of reference, the Earth is moving away from you, so if you could look at a clock on Earth from your space ship it would slow down, therefore making your clock faster by comparison. Is this correct reasoning? On the other hand an observer on Earth would see you and your spaceship moving from his/her frame of reference and see the spaceship clock moving slower. My ultimate question is will the observer in the spaceship really see his clock move faster with respect to the Earth clocks? Thanks for your help. I have a dinner bet on this so don't let me down!
This is correct. The observer on the spaceship would say the Earth-bound clock is running more slowly than the spaceship clock. The observer on Earth would say the spaceship clock is running more slowly than the Earth-bound clock.

Of course, it's not just the "clocks" -- the observers would say that time itself is flowing more slowly at the other point.

3. I may have missunderstood the question but I believe you have it backwards. For the person in the ship time would slow down WRT time on Earth so the Earth clock would appear to be very fast. If the traveller came back to Earth, all of the people who stayed behind would have aged more than the traveller.

Now from the travellers own point of view time would pass normally. Earth bound people would see the traveller's clock seem to slow and traveller's aging would slow also.

This is sometimes refered to as the "Twins Paradox". It is not actually a paradox but..... what the heck? [img]/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif[/img]

4. On 2002-02-15 10:36, Russ wrote:
I may have missunderstood the question but I believe you have it backwards. For the person in the ship time would slow down WRT time on Earth so the Earth clock would appear to be very fast.
No, not for the usual formulation of the problem.

If the traveller came back to Earth, all of the people who stayed behind would have aged more than the traveller.
That's true, though.

Now from the travellers own point of view time would pass normally. Earth bound people would see the traveller's clock seem to slow and traveller's aging would slow also.
Also true.

5. On 2002-02-15 10:36, Russ wrote:

This is sometimes refered to as the "Twins Paradox". It is not actually a paradox but..... what the heck? [img]/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif[/img]
Russ, check GrapesOfWrath's post above mine here. The ship observer sees the Earth-bound clock as running more slowly than his own while he's moving away from Earth and while he's moving back towards Earth. What he sees happening back on Earth at the time he stops and turns around has been the subject of much discussion here on this board, and comes into play when determining why more time has passed on Earth and not less.

In other words, it is a bit of a "common sense" paradox, but the math does actually work out . . .

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On 2002-02-15 11:08, SeanF wrote:

Russ, check GrapesOfWrath's post above mine here. The ship observer sees the Earth-bound clock as running more slowly than his own while he's moving away from Earth and while he's moving back towards Earth. What he sees happening back on Earth at the time he stops and turns around has been the subject of much discussion here on this board, and comes into play when determining why more time has passed on Earth and not less.
Howdy folks,

I just wanna add a little to what SeanF said. Whether the spaceship is moving towards Earth or away from Earth, our intrepid traveller will see Earth's clock ticking at the same slower rate. The amount of time dilation is a function of the square of velocity, so regardless of whether you're coming or going, it's the same. (For those who know vector calculus and want to get picky, it's actually a function of velocity dotted with itself.)

7. On 2002-02-15 06:00, Ragnar wrote:
"...My ultimate question is will the observer in the spaceship really see his clock move faster with respect to the Earth clocks?"
If he could see the Earth clock from his ship, the Earth clock would be moving slower than his spaceship clock as he approaches the speed of light. If he just looked at his clock inside the ship, it would appear to be running at the "normal" speed all the time, and not speeding up. His spaceship clock runs faster in relation to the reference frame of the Earthly clock as he approaches the speed of light.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Chip on 2002-02-15 11:29 ]</font>

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If he could see the Earth clock from his ship, the Earth clock would be moving slower than his spaceship clock as he approaches the speed of light. If he just looked at his clock inside the ship, it would appear to be running at the "normal" speed all the time, and not speeding up. His spaceship clock runs faster in relation to the reference frame of the Earthly clock as he approaches the speed of light.
I believe that we are mis-interpreting statements such as the one above.

When the observer looks back on Earth, I believe that from his perspective ALL movements on Earth will seem faster (like watching a video on fast forward).

As I read statements such as the one quoted above I am given the impression that the opposite was intended, but I find it difficult to believe that somehow I have got this thing backwards (if observer on the spacecraft actually saw movements slowing down on Earth this would make no sense at all).

To make myself clear I offer a simple thought experiment. Let us assume that the observer on board the spacecraft completes his journey in just 6 hours (Earth time). If we now assume that the clock on board the spacecraft has advanced just 3 hours, then the hands on the clocks on Earth must have been moving twice as fast as those on the spacecraft.

Now if he was watching the clocks on Earth and the hands appeared to be moving slower throughout the trip, then how did the clocks on Earth end up showing times which were ahead of the times denoted by the clocks on board the spacecraft ?

Jeff

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: Phobos on 2002-02-15 21:46 ]</font>

9. On 2002-02-15 21:19, Phobos wrote:
Now if he was watching the clocks on Earth and the hands appeared to be moving slower throughout the trip, then how did the clocks on Earth end up showing times which were ahead of the times denoted by the clocks on board the spacecraft ?
That's why it's called a paradox, although it really isn't. Just seems counter-intuitive, I guess.

Twin paradox is my attempt at explaining it. And this, and this.

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Your examples are well presented explanations of certains specifics about the twins paradox, but you have not addressed the example I gave of the 6 hour trip.

In this example there is only one possibility and that is that the observer on the spacecraft will see clocks on Earth move faster than clocks on board his spacecraft.

Phobos

11. Just substitute "hours" for "years" at that first link. Then Ann, on Earth, ages 10 hours, while Bob ages 8 hours. And yet, while traveling, they both see each others clocks as slow.

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Another quick question.

A fellow brought up the following point when we were discussing time dilation. If you travel near the speed of light to a planet 100 light years away, the spaceship would get there in say 20 years. Now only 20 years have passed for our traveller, but he has reached a planet that should take a 100 years at the speed of light. He has no reference (assuming the planet has no one to greet him). It was brought to my attention that the traveller would be convinced that he must have travelled faster than the speed of light since only 20 years have elapsed for him. Weird. Am I missing something? Oh, and thaks for all your help on the previous post!

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Am I missing something? Oh, and thaks for all your help on the previous post!
Yes, you are missing a possibility. The guy in the space ship, during the turn around, sees the universe in the direction of his acceleration speed up. In other words, he all of a sudden is under the influence of a gravity-like force, except that this force has no mass associated with it. The universe in the direction opposite this "nonNewtonian" force has a rate of time that is speeded up relative to his own. The further that portion of the universe is, the bigger it speeds up.

Just repeat after me. An inertial frame is one where the laws of physics are simplest. An accelerated frame is one where the laws of physics are a bit complicated. The time dilation (the slow down) only has to apply to the inertial frame.

14. On 2002-02-16 15:53, Ragnar wrote:
Another quick question.

A fellow brought up the following point when we were discussing time dilation. If you travel near the speed of light to a planet 100 light years away, the spaceship would get there in say 20 years. Now only 20 years have passed for our traveller, but he has reached a planet that should take a 100 years at the speed of light. He has no reference (assuming the planet has no one to greet him). It was brought to my attention that the traveller would be convinced that he must have travelled faster than the speed of light since only 20 years have elapsed for him. Weird. Am I missing something? Oh, and thaks for all your help on the previous post!
Yep, you're missing something. Relativity not only involves a temporal "distortion," but also a spatial "distortion." While moving, the traveler would measure the distance between the two planets as being a little less than 20 light-years. Therefore, since it took him 20 years to travel less than 20 light-years, he would measure his own velocity as less than the speed of light.

When he's done and stopped, he could look at Earth 100 light years away and say, "Gee, only 20 years passed since I left there," but he would at no time during the journey have measured his own velocity as exceeding c.

15. On 2002-02-16 13:35, Phobos wrote:
Your examples are well presented explanations of certains specifics about the twins paradox, but you have not addressed the example I gave of the 6 hour trip.

In this example there is only one possibility and that is that the observer on the spacecraft will see clocks on Earth move faster than clocks on board his spacecraft.

Phobos
Phobos, in order to get back to Earth, the traveller needs to stop and turn around. He would "see" weird things happening with the clocks on Earth while doing so.

However, he would see the Earth clock as running more slowly than his own clock during the entire time he is simply moving relative to Earth.

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On 2002-02-18 08:01, SeanF wrote:

Phobos, in order to get back to Earth, the traveller needs to stop and turn around. He would "see" weird things happening with the clocks on Earth while doing so.

However, he would see the Earth clock as running more slowly than his own clock during the entire time he is simply moving relative to Earth.

What if when he turns around in a large curve without slowing down? by the time he reaches earth there would be a huge discrepancy between the earth clock as he observes it and the actual time on the clock.The clocks must be syncronised when he stops so when and how does the clock as the shipboard observer sees it catch up to the clock as it realy is?
I have been thinking about this and would like to present a thought experiment which gives a different view on things:
On earth is a clock E1e;on a space ship are three clocks, S1 shows ship time, E1s shows earth time via an instantanious link to E1e,and E2 which is timed by a powerful laser pulsing at 1 second intervals fired along the course the ship will travel. The ship flies off into space and returns 10 years later at which time E1s shows 10 years and S1 shows 8 years.

17. Sarnian,

All your numbers seem to be right, and there's no discrepancy in the times the clocks are reading at the end, so I'm not sure what your question is.

Something to think about, though -- ignore the E1s clock (since under current theory instantaneous communication is impossible) and figure out how a person on the spacecraft would determine the time of E1e based on what he's reading on E2.

Keep two things in mind: First, that as far as he's concerned he's sitting still and the Earth is moving; Secondly, that the speed of light and his own speed should remain constant for him.

Specific example: at the first point you mentioned (S1 reads "16 months") Earth's been moving away from him at 0.6c for 16 months (by his measurements), and he's receiving a signal from E1e that says "8 months". How long ago (S1 time) did that "8 months" signal leave Earth, and where was Earth at the time? What was the difference between S1 and E1e at that time?

Figure this out for various points on the outgoing trip, getting further from Earth each time. Then, figure this out for various points on the return trip (keeping in mind that Earth is moving towards the spaceship now).

What happens to the spaceship's measurement of Earth time close to the turn-around point?

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Excuse me but- I haven't heard anyone mention that there is a difference between the time dilation and our perception of the time dilation. Specifically, the question was "what would the observer see" that means we are asking for the latter, not the former. The reason I say this is because the signals which are travelling back and forth between the Earth and the ship will appear red shifted, or stretched. This causes the perception, on both ends, that the other end is running slow. Isn't that correct? And by extension that means on the return trip both sets of signals would be blue shifted, or in other words, speeded up.That means both ends would see the other's time as moving faster.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: grumium on 2002-02-24 12:12 ]</font>

19. On 2002-02-24 11:31, grumium wrote:
The reason I say this is because the signals which are travelling back and forth between the Earth and the ship will appear red shifted, or stretched. This causes the perception, on both ends, that the other end is running slow. Isn't that correct?
If so, then how would it work out for the return journey? As you point out, it seems to reverse the effect--so that's a clue.

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<a name="20020225.5:09"> page 20020225.5:09 aka on Impulse
On 2002-02-25 04:54, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To: 5:10 A.M. PST

On 2002-02-24 11:31, grumium wrote:

LOCKTHRD = HUb' Ba INDX
6:43
5:10
1:33 to convert PST to BaBBpt add one HOUR 33 min?

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: HUb' on 2002-02-25 06:47 ]</font>

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Are you saying the signals would not be blue shifted on the return? Or that they would not appear speeded up? Or something else?

22. On 2002-02-25 21:58, grumium wrote:
Are you saying the signals would not be blue shifted on the return? Or that they would not appear speeded up?
"What do you think special relativity says about it?" is what I meant. What is your impression of that theory, and how it treats that case?

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<a name="20020226.6:34"> page 20020226.6:34 aka two clocks
On 2002-02-26 04:48, GrapesOfWrath wrote: To? 6:35 A.M. 2-2-26
JD2452332 | 5 MUCUK 7 KAYAB | February 26, 2002 : 6:36 A.M.
On 2002-02-25 21:58, grumium wrote: too
Are you saying the signals would not be blue shifted on the return? Or that they would not appear speeded up?[/quote]
"What do you think special relativity says about it?" is what I meant. What is your impression of that theory, and how it treats that case?
[/quote] My guess about "Radio Signals" vs " Laser Beams " going
from Texas to the space station's that [yep]
turns the Guys Blue check the .jpg. So 4me
not only must you have a CB set but a Laser Mouse? i've both, but use neithor. {oh my}

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On 2002-02-25 21:58, grumium wrote:
Are you saying the signals would not be blue shifted on the return? Or that they would not appear speeded up? Or something else?
There are two different phenomenon going on here; time dilation and Doppler shift. Depending on the speed you could *see* the clocks running faster even though you would *measure* them on a gridwork of clocks to be running slower.

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I get the impression that you still don't follow me. If you are moving toward Earth at .6C and recieving video transmissions, they would be coming in at about 2 1/2 times the rate at which they were broadcast. Your time dilation is only 20%. Why wouldn't they appear to be coming in faster than normal? And by the way ,this question IS about what you would SEE on those transmissions. On the subject of what I think of the theory, I think Einstein was a brilliant theoretician but he must have made a lousy research assistant. I have been studying his work for almost 30 years and it still awes me. But the scientist in me says there is something wrong with it. It frustrates me that we are still unable to experimentally verify its conclusions and what little data we really have to go on suggest the theory is close but inexact or otherwise incomplete. This doesn't surprise me since, upon scrutiny of his "lab technic " I was disturbed to find he comitted the kind of mistakes that render data and conclusions scientifically worthless. I don't have a problem with "thought experiments"; every scientist performs his experiments in his mind, but you must be careful to consider all physical laws- you can't throw out the ones that are inconvenient and you can't uncouple velocity from acceleration. Also, if you're travelling near the speed of light you can't change directions or " hop" onto or off of something travelling at near light speed to avoid the acceleration. Lastly, I don't accept some of his definitions. It seems he had trouble with this, too; there is something distinctly different about our frame of reference. If you think of gravity as a special type of acceleration, we are not in a system at rest.

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: grumium on 2002-02-26 22:52 ]</font>

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On 2002-02-26 21:38, grumium wrote:
I get the impression that you still don't follow me. If you are moving toward Earth at .6C and recieving video transmissions, they would be coming in at about 2 1/2 times the rate at which they were broadcast. Your time dilation is only 20%. Why wouldn't they appear to be coming in faster than normal? And by the way ,this question IS about what you would SEE on those transmissions.
And I get the impression that you don't have the foggiest idea how to politely ask a question in such a manner as to induce someone to expend the effort to answer it.

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Perhaps so, we all have our flaws.I certainly did not intend to offend but I feel as though you can't question Einstein here without being attacked. Instead of answers I get questions.

28. Questions aren't really the same thing as attacks--I hadn't realized until your later posts that you were questioning Einstein. I had thought that you were working it out within the context of Einstein's theories of relativity.

OTOH, I don't quite understand from your explanations in the Twin Paradox why you think that Einstein's thought experiments require the suspension of physical laws. Which physical laws?

I know that is another question, but I'm trying to understand your own question.

On 2002-02-26 21:38, grumium wrote:
I get the impression that you still don't follow me. If you are moving toward Earth at .6C and recieving video transmissions, they would be coming in at about 2 1/2 times the rate at which they were broadcast. Your time dilation is only 20%. Why wouldn't they appear to be coming in faster than normal? And by the way ,this question IS about what you would SEE on those transmissions. On the subject of what I think of the theory, I think Einstein was a brilliant theoretician but he must have made a lousy research assistant. I have been studying his work for almost 30 years and it still awes me. But the scientist in me says there is something wrong with it. It frustrates me that we are still unable to experimentally verify its conclusions and what little data we really have to go on suggest the theory is close but inexact or otherwise incomplete.
My impression is that we have quite a lot of data, not just a little. Dirac derived his famous quantum equation using special relativity--and the derived theory has been tremendously successful.

This doesn't surprise me since, upon scrutiny of his "lab technic " I was disturbed to find he comitted the kind of mistakes that render data and conclusions scientifically worthless.
You have found errors in this lab technique? Which of his lab experiments are you referring to?

I don't have a problem with "thought experiments"; every scientist performs his experiments in his mind, but you must be careful to consider all physical laws- you can't throw out the ones that are inconvenient and you can't uncouple velocity from acceleration.
Again, which physical laws are you referring to?

Also, if you're travelling near the speed of light you can't change directions or " hop" onto or off of something travelling at near light speed to avoid the acceleration. Lastly, I don't accept some of his definitions. It seems he had trouble with this, too; there is something distinctly different about our frame of reference. If you think of gravity as a special type of acceleration, we are not in a system at rest.
That's certainly one way to think about gravity. Einstein had some success thinking about it as not a special case.

Anyway, welcome to the BABB. You bring a certain nostalgic feel to it, reminds me of some of our former dearly departed posters.

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On 2002-02-27 07:23, GrapesOfWrath wrote:

Anyway, welcome to the BABB. You bring a certain nostalgic feel to it, reminds me of some of our former dearly departed posters.

Gee GoW. . .didn't realize you were the nostalgic type! Maybe if we ask really nice, the BA will, uhm, offer another chance to a few of those dearly departed individuals??? [img]/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif[/img] :0

30. On 2002-02-26 21:38, grumium wrote:

If you are moving toward Earth at .6C and recieving video transmissions, they would be coming in at about 2 1/2 times the rate at which they were broadcast. Your time dilation is only 20%. Why wouldn't they appear to be coming in faster than normal?
First off, if you're moving towards earth at 0.6c, the Doppler Effect would be about 1.6, not 2.5, wouldn't it?

But what that means is that you would expect to "see" Earth's clock running 1.6 times the rate of your own clock. If you actually "see" Earth's clock running 1.28 times the rate of your own clock, then Earth's clock is 20% slower than it should be.

So, you would see Earth's clock running 28% faster than your own, but 20% slower than "normal", because "normal" would be the expected 60% faster than your own.

At any rate (Hah! Get it? Sometimes I amuse myself [img]/phpBB/images/smiles/icon_smile.gif[/img] ), when a Relativity-related experiment talks about how one observer "sees" another clock, it's usually understood to be a reference to how they would measure that other clock's actual time, not how they would literally "receive" any light-speed signals from that clock . . .

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<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: SeanF on 2002-02-27 08:36 ]</font>

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