Thread: Term for relativistic contraction of accelerating object?

1. Term for relativistic contraction of accelerating object?

I know most people reading this will say "that's Bell's spaceship paradox" - but it's something else I've seen named - but have forgotten again.

(((I think it's another relativity of simultaneity thing: if you accelerate an object, it's by definition moving according to someone, and they may not be able to agree with someone else that the front and back of the object accelerated by the same amount at the same time.)))

Last time I saw the name for this effect mentioned, I made a link somewhere - that I now can't find.

Apologies that I can't be more precise or detailed.

2. Longitudinal contraction?

(edit, I am not sure that's a "thing". As near as a I can tell most people say "length contraction" and longitudinal pops up when it's important to say how said item is contracted along the line of travel.)
Last edited by Solfe; 2021-Jul-06 at 05:37 AM.

3. It remains length contraction relative to an observer but the maths, especially the general cases of three and four accelerations get more complex. You basically differentiate the Lorenz contraction. The contraction seen by an observer is basically because of finite speed of light and velocities near that speed. I believe in Einstein SR it , acceleration, is not covered and was developed by others.

4. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Length_contraction

Length contraction is the phenomenon that a moving object's length is measured to be shorter than its proper length, which is the length as measured in the object's own rest frame.[1] It is also known as Lorentz contraction or Lorentz–FitzGerald contraction (after Hendrik Lorentz and George Francis FitzGerald) and is usually only noticeable at a substantial fraction of the speed of light.

5. The differential acceleration experienced by the inhabitants of a coordinate system that is uniformly accelerating for an inertial observer (the foundation of Bell's Paradox), is described by the Rindler metric, which is often mentioned in discussions of this phenomenon. The experience of observers who are being continuously accelerated by a rotating reference, (Langevin observers) is described by the Born metric.

Grant Hutchison

6. Thanks for all the above everyone, all good and accurate information.

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