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Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity

What was Einstein’s DOB and DOD?
1879 – 1955

What was Galileo’s Principle of Relativity?
All observers who move uniformly relative to each other are equal,and no absolute state of motion can be attributed to any observer

What was James Clerk Maxwell’s DOB and DOD?
1831 -1879

What did Maxwell do in the field of electromagnetism?
1. Showed that electric and magnetic fields travel as waves at the speed of light
2. Suggest they are waves in the ether

When did the Michelson-Morley experiment take place?
1887

What was the main goal of the Michelson-Morley experiment?
To measure the speed of the earth’s motion through the ether

What were the specifics of the Michelson-Morley experiment?
1. They measured differences in the speed of light in different directions relative to the earth’s motion
2. The speed of light seemed to be constant
3. They failed to detect any motion of the earth through the ether
4. This was the first piece of evidence suggesting the ether doesn’t exist

When did Einstein publish his theory of relativity?
1905

What are the basics of Einstein’s theory of relativity?
1. He said the speed of light was a constant, c = 3 x 10^8 m/s
2. If I am travelling at velocity v, away from a light source, I measure the speed of light as c, not c-v as Newton suggested

What are the two axioms Einstein based his Theory of Relativity on?
1. Light always travels at the same speed through an empty space regardless of the motion of the source/observer
2. No experiment can ever be performed that is able to detect absolute motion (Galileo’s principle)

What were Newton’s and Einstein’s rule for combining two velocities?
Newton: V = v1 + v2
Einstein: V = (v1 + v2)/(1 + v1v2/c^2)

Who’s velocity equation works best with small velocities?
Einstein’s and Newtons equations will give nearly the same answer

Who’s velocity equation works best with large velocities, i.e. close to the speed of light?
Einstein’s

When did Einstein release his theory of General Relativity, and what was it?
1916, spacetime is curved by the presence of matter

Who verified Einstein’s theory of General Relativity, and how?
Sir Arthur Eddington, by astronomical observations during the eclipse of 1919

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