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Old 08-08-2002, 10:47 AM   #1
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Speed of light inconstant?

http://www.cnn.com/2002/WORLD/asiapc...eed/index.html

I'm not an experimental physicist, so I'm not familiar with the experiment these astrophysicists did.

I wouldn't say that this proves that Einstein's special or general theories of relativity are wrong, though. What really governs the speed of light are epsilon_0 and mu_0, epsilon_0 being the constant that determines how strong electrostatic attraction/repulsion is in empty space (how strong of a force there is between two charges), and mu_0 being the constant that determines the coupling between electrodynamics and magnetism in empty space (how strong of a magnetic force is generated by an electric current). So it could be just that empty space was different in the early universe, however that might have happened.

Of course, the inconstancy of the speed of light may pose a quandary for theoretical physicists, who define the speed of light to be 1.

Anywho, thought some folks here might find this interesting/amusing.
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Old 08-08-2002, 04:46 PM   #2
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thats neat.

I read in a book that right now we are actually travalling at close to half the speed of light. I can't find the book that I read that in though. The speed of light is 186 300 miles per second. It said that since the earth is rotating at just over 1 000 miles per hour. The earth is also rotating around the sun at 67 000 miles per hour. Add that up and you get 68 000 miles per hour. Which is about 109 436 kilometres per hour. The milky way galaxy is rotating at approximately 250 kilometres per second.

Now, I suck at conversions but I'm pretty sure the book knew what it was talking about. Of course, the book had everything in miles per second and I cant seem to find all of my info in miles or kilometres per second.
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Old 08-08-2002, 04:58 PM   #3
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Ravenstar,

I hate to point out something obvious but you made a wee little mistake. According to your data we are not travelling at nearly half the speed of light, not even close to it. The speed of light is 186,300 miles/SECOND(or 300,000 km/SECOND) while the earth is moving with 109,436 km/HOUR (or 30,4 km/SECOND). So you were mixing up the hours and the seconds. Now I know that some moments can last for hours and that some long events go by in a blink, but scientifically you cannot interchange these two terms.

Marty

P.S. I personally don't think that the results of the new experiment are entirely correct. For many years all research has indicated that Einstein's formula is true, even in different settings. This is the first time somebody have found a different result (AFAIK), so unless more results support this experiment I consider it some faulty research.
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Old 08-08-2002, 06:39 PM   #4
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I thought something was wrong.
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