Relativity visualized

Space Time Travel

Closing remarks

The computer simulations in this paper show the visual appearance of objects that are moving at nearly the speed of light. We may also ask the reciprocal question: Suppose we could ourselves move at nearly the speed of light and watch nonmoving objects - what would they look like? The principle of relativity provides a simple answer: If the observer is in motion and the object at rest or vice versa is just a question of our point of view. If the relative velocity is the same, then the film taken during fly by will be the same. The explanation of the visual effects, however, is different in the two cases. For an explanation of why an observer moving at nearly the speed of light sees the objects around her distorted, see [6] ("Through the city at nearly the speed of light", online version [abridged] on this website) and [7] ("Tempolimit: Lichtgeschwindigkeit - Beobachtungen bei Hochgeschwindigkeitsflügen", online version on this website, in German).


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Olaf Henkel: Einstein für Einsteiger, Einführung in die Spezielle Relativitätstheorie, Sterne und Weltraum 2-3,4,6,10,11/2000, 8/2002, 1/2003 (in German)

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Neil Gehrels, Luigi Piro, Peter J. T. Leonard: Die stärksten Explosionen im Universum, Spektrum der Wissenschaft 3/2003 [über Gamma-Bursts] (in German)

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Authors: Ute Kraus, Date: July 14, 2005
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