Why can't you go faster than the speed of light. (26)

1 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-08 05:06 ID:SBohC+7D

I can walk to the store.. It may take 3 minutes.
I can run to the store.. It may take 1.14 minutes..
Why cant this process continue for ever?

Why, when you reach the speed of light, does time suddenly "fall apart" so to say.. Does that mean time and light are directly connected?

If there was no light in the Univers, and some object approached ≈ 186,282.397 MPH.......... what then?

Why can't an object simply go faster, without "Bending space-time", perhaps 187,000 mph?

2 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-08 14:31 ID:YJlIXjo+

Well, it's not so much that "The speed of light" is the fastest you can go. It's not based on how fast light can go, because in fact it's pretty easy to slow down light. Light goes that speed because that is the upper limit speed of what ANY object can go. It's just easier to say "Speed of Light" (which only goes that speed in a vacuum)

As an object goes faster and faster, it takes more and more energy to make it move. Eventually, as the object reaches the speed of light, the amount of energy required to move faster becomes huge until it becomes simply INFINITE. Therefore it's pretty much impossible to even REACH the speed of light, let alone breach it.

Light can go that speed because it pretty much doesn't have any mass.

3 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-09 08:24 ID:c6HUKjaX

using high school level relativistic physics:
you can't because of the principle of e=mc^2. This equation governs the idea behind the atom bomb. i.e the energy released from some amount of mass equals the mass times the square of the speed of light. thats a shitload of energy, considering the speed of light is 300,000,000 km/s. or whatever.

this equation works in converse, i.e not only can mass be converted to energy, but energy be converted to mass. a car accelerating forwards has kinetic energy. some of this energy does in fact get converted to mass, but only a miniscule amount, is you sub it into the equation.

the reason you cannot reach or exceed the speed of light is because, as your speed or energy increases, more and more of it is converted into mass. this mass increase in turn means that you need more energy to keep it going forward at the same speed as before. the cycle continues until you run out of fuel.

but how about we say we have an awesomemo-engine that can provide constant acceleration forever?

fuyck you

4 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-10 16:42 ID:yBMuqZUd

Also, the equations for relativistic dilation don't work any more if you reach or go faster than c. You'd become infinitely massive, infinitely small, and something similarly fucked up would happen to your perception of time. Either everyone else wouldn't perceive your clock to move, or the other way around.

This is just based on our mathematical model of the whole problem, but it makes sense in its own retarded, anal-retentive way.

6 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-11 06:11 ID:EkLJbq8y

Well technicly photons do have mass.
They are effected by black holes and if they had no mass then I would imagine they would be unaffected by gravity.
If Tachyons exist and can go faster than speed of light then I would imagine they would have no mass then?

7 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-11 16:52 ID:i62cq6IX

Tachyons have imaginary mass (=negative squared mass.)

8 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-12 01:33 ID:Heaven

> Well technicly photons do have mass.

no, they don't.

> They are effected by black holes and if they had no mass then I would imagine they would be unaffected by gravity.

back to third grade science, please.

9 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-12 08:27 ID:c6HUKjaX

the equations for time dilation, length contraction, mass increase and many other properties are often of the form (stationary quantity)=k(moving quantity), where k equals

where c= the speed of light and v= velocity.

as the velocity approaches c, k approaches zero. mathematically, if v were to be larger than c, then you would have a square root of a negative number (try subbing in a value where v>c in the about equation.). and we all know there is no number which solves the equation for a negative swuare root.

unless you start talking about imaginary numbers, in which case fuck you

10 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-12 22:12 ID:EkLJbq8y

11 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-12 23:33 ID:Heaven

> and we all know there is no number which solves the equation for a negative swuare root.
> unless you start talking about imaginary numbers, in which case fuck you

back to third grade maths, please.

12 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-16 09:19 ID:c6HUKjaX

as my math professor said,

"fuck you"

13 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-22 04:39 ID:RQevILTS

Tachyons are hypothetical entities never detected in any experiment. And some versions of string theory forbid their existence.

14 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-22 15:42 ID:i62cq6IX

What do the current string theories postulate for FTL?

15 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-25 03:53 ID:Heaven

no current string "theories" have ever been tested by any experiment. they are not real theories.

16 Name: Anonymous Analyst : 2009-05-27 07:13 ID:toJif5n3

While not being able to accuratly describe or even present a what if scenario, the time factor and even the means to produce propulsion to a light speed limit cannot be achieved with modern technology. I am curious (which is why I am even posting) what kind of propulsion system, theoretical or not (and I am trying to avoid just the star trek method btw) would be able to: 1 produce that kind of thrust, 2 overcome the spactime differential effect.

Look, my field of expertise is signals analysis and satellite communications NOT quantum physics. I'm just curious is all...

17 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-27 23:54 ID:i62cq6IX

Well, seeing that the laws of our universe -don't- allow for FTL, we probably need to seek -other- methods.

  1. hyperspace, aka some kind of spacetime where the laws apply differently. Or,
  2. teleport, aka some kind of instant transfer.

But currently, that's all sci-fi.

18 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-28 02:53 ID:Heaven

the laws of our universe as we currently understand them do allow things to move faster than c, they just don't allow anything to accelerate/decelerate through c.

19 Name: Anonymous Analyst : 2009-05-30 09:28 ID:toJif5n3

So basicallg >>18 , you are saying that something has to reach a constant speed before it could travel faster than light but it will never be allowed?

I read something on relativity recently basing more on einsteins concept of the person in motion aging far less than the one stagnant.

Does this tie into lightspeed at all or not?

Also, why toss a sage on there? You trying to bury the thread when people are asking valid questions and discussing stuff?

20 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-30 18:29 ID:Heaven

> So basicallg >>18 , you are saying that something has to reach a constant speed before it could travel faster than light but it will never be allowed?

"One curious effect is that, unlike ordinary particles, the speed of a tachyon increases as its energy decreases. (For ordinary bradyonic matter, E increases with increasing velocity, becoming arbitrarily large as v approaches c, the speed of light.) Therefore, just as bradyons are forbidden to break the light-speed barrier, so too are tachyons forbidden from slowing down to below c, since to reach the barrier from either above or below requires infinite energy."

> Also, why toss a sage on there?

why are you bumping the top thread? do you have some sort of thread-bumping fetish or something?

21 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-05-31 00:39 ID:XcY4MZP0

These are universal constants. If we introduce a logic system from which physics laws derive, and if we introduce the concept of 'speed' in that system, we automatically put objects in order.

For example, we're able to ask "Which is the fastest object?" and "Which could be the fastest object?". We can also ask "which is the slowest object" et cetera.

It's possible to conceive different physics with different constants, or objects travelling faster than the light. In our universe, it's just how it is. Travelling faster than the light is not conceivable because it is not allowed by our nature. Likewise it's impossible to be indestructible, for instance.

22 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-06-12 22:41 ID:EkLJbq8y

On this show they were able to slow the speed of light down to a few miles per hour by sending it through some super cooled substance at a few degrees Kelvin. So it would be possible to go faster than that particular light.

23 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-06-14 07:51 ID:Heaven

you're capable of moving "through some super cooled substance at a few degrees Kelvin"?
because that's what you'd have to do to move faster than that particular light.

24 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-06-20 10:00 ID:EkLJbq8y

a bullet would be able to go faster than that light if you shot it through the super cooled substance.

25 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-06-21 14:50 ID:1I70Wig+


On the next "Mythbusters"...

26 Name: Anonymous Scientist : 2009-06-22 03:20 ID:9gcEwppj

>I can run to the store.. It may take 1.14 minutes.. Why cant this process continue for ever?

It can. The only limit on the time it must take you to reach the store (as measured by your own watch), is that it must take longer than 0. By your own experience, you can arrive at the store faster than c, however, for someone staying at home watching you run to the store, they will never witness you traveling any faster than c. So while your trip to the store may have taken you 0.00001 seconds, to them it took you a full 0.01 seconds. This happens because you will be traveling through time more quickly than them. So any time you talk about an object's speed you have to ask, "as measured by whom?" Both distances and durations of time are different depending on whom you are asking.

All this follows from a single assumption -- that no matter how fast you are traveling, the basic laws of the universe should still work the same way in any experiment you do inside your space ship. In other words, no one frame of reference can be said to be more "at rest" than another. And some of the most tried and true laws of nature are Maxwell's Equations, which describe how electric and magnetic fields propagate. From these equations, it is easily shown that there are electromagnetic waves, and they must travel at c. That is what sets up the conundrum. The same waves, as measured by anyone, in any frame reference, have to be observed as traveling at c. It was discovered around the same time that those waves can equally be considered a particle (a photon). So if A is traveling away from B at 0.9c, and a photon is passing B at 1.0c, how fast is that photon traveling away from A? Common sense says 0.9 + 1.0 = 1.9, but the logic of relativity insists that 0.9 + 1.0 = 1.0. So special relativity sets out the mathematical framework whereby that can be, by relative speeds essentially change the way time and distances present themselves to each perspective.

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