Need some help with figuring something out

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Postby ReflectingGod » Mon Oct 10, 2005 2:23 am

Stupid talk aside, I am inclined to agree with Smeggy, it's theoretically possible to travel above the speed of light, but it's not possible to accelerate a massive object through the speed of light.

And also, what Stew's says is correct, confusing this relativity stuff, isn't it. :?

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Postby Stewsburntmonkey » Mon Oct 10, 2005 3:18 am

An issue when you start discussing faster than light travel is that matter moving faster than the speed of light will appear to some observers to be moving backward through time. This would mean it would be theoretically possible for someone to go back in time and kill his father or grandfather. However there is a paradox in killing your father or grandfather before they had a chance to produce offspring. If your grandfather is killed before he has offspring neither your father nor you should exist.

Further since speed is relative to the observer if I spin around in circles the moon, sun and stars all appear to orbit me rapidly. In fact the speed at which they orbit me (given their distance from me) is faster than the speed of light.

It should also be pointed out that this faster than light thing is only true in a vaccum. In water or even air matter can travel faster than light, because air and water both reduce the speed of light significantly.
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Postby Dezmond » Tue Oct 11, 2005 3:31 pm

Speed of light in vacuum: 3x10^8 m/s
Speed of light in fibre-optic cables: 2x10^8 m/s

I could go on forever... Stew's last point is correct. General relativity refers to the speed of light in a vacuum, rather than another material.

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