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Thread: Discussion: Einstein Still Seems to Be Right

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    SUMMARY: Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity says that information can’t travel faster than the speed of light in a vacuum, and a new experiment carried out by researchers at the University of Arizona seems to support this. By creating what’s called “Gaussian Pulses”, experimenters can send light through a medium of pumped potassium gas which causes part of the light wave to travel faster than the speed of light. But when they tried to send information along the wave as discontinuities in the signal, they didn’t travel through faster than the speed of light.


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  2. #2
    Guest Guest
    Well there are different theories, such as cause and effect, virtually.

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  3. #3
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    How can light travel faster in potassium gas than it can in a vacuum?

  4. #4
    pranav Guest
    Originally posted by fraser@Oct 16 2003, 07:28 PM
    SUMMARY: Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity says that information can’t travel faster than the speed of light in a vacuum, and a new experiment carried out by researchers at the University of Arizona seems to support this. By creating what’s called “Gaussian Pulses”, experimenters can send light through a medium of pumped potassium gas which causes part of the light wave to travel faster than the speed of light. But when they tried to send information along the wave as discontinuities in the signal, they didn’t travel through faster than the speed of light.


    Comments or questions about this story? Feel free to share your thoughts.
    How can light travel faster in potassium?

  5. #5
    Madsen Guest
    Hi!

    Errr... Physicists (I am one&#33 actually use the letter "c" (not "C") to denote the speed of light....

    Take Care!

  6. #6
    Guest_bob Guest
    Pumped potassium? Is this where a population inversion is set up in the gas as in the helium-neon laser?Strange how part of the light wave can be made to propagate faster than c. Like to know more about the experiment if possible.
    Cheers.

  7. #7
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    Not being privy to the experiment makes my comments third hand, but I was told that the photons did not really travel faster than the speed of light. I could accept that as the speed of photons is the definition of the speed of light. Putting that aside, the speed of propagation can be enhanced by what is known as the "searchlight effect". This effect is similar to a searchlight rapidly panning the horizon. To an observer at an acute angle will observe the illumination on the horizon approaching or receding at faster than the speed of light.

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    jim buxton Guest
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  9. #9
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    Where's carlosncarlos when you *really* need him???

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