Hi, I am new here, and thought that someone could help me with this query:
A while back, I was reading a book written by the late Professor Robert Mills (co-inventor of Yang-Mills Theory), when I encountered this passage:
I later read this from Max Born (the Nobel Laureate):Another way of stating the principle of equivalence, a way that better reflects its name, is to say that all reference frames, including accelerated reference frames, are equivalent, that the laws of Physics take the same form in any reference frame…. And it is also correct to say that the Copernican view (with the sun at the centre) and the Ptolemaic view (with the earth at the centre) are equally valid and equally consistent! [Mills (1994), pp.182-83.]
Mills, R. (1994), Space, Time And Quanta (W H Freeman).Thus from Einstein's point of view Ptolemy and Copernicus are equally right. What point of view is chosen is a matter of expediency. For the mechanics of the planetary system the view of Copernicus is certainly the more convenient. But it is meaningless to call the gravitational fields that occur when a different system of reference is chosen 'fictitious' in contrast with the 'real' fields produced by near masses: it is just as meaningless as the question of the 'real' length of a rod...in the special theory of relativity. A gravitational field is neither 'real' nor 'fictitious' in itself. It has no meaning at all independent of the choice of coordinates, just as in the case of the length of a rod. [Born (1965), p.345.]
Born, M. (1965), Einstein's Theory Of Relativity (Dover, 2nd ed.).
Now, I'm a mathematician, and have enough maths to be able to grasp the basics of Relativity Theory, but not enough physics to answer this question:
If, say, Ptolemaic astronomy is equally valid as the Copernican system -- according to the Equivalence Principle [EP] --, then isn't the fact that the stars would have to orbit the earth once a day (making them travel many times faster than light) an effective refutation of this Principle? Not all frames of reference can be equally valid if at least one of them has this crazy consequence.
Now, I am not interested in Geocentrism (I know you have discussed this before); my concern is over the fact that I do not know enough physics to see where this goes wrong. One consequence of the EP is that Special Relativity is false!
Of course, I might be making a 'rookie mistake' here, and would appreciate some guidance.