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Length standards and the twin paradox in the special theory of relativity

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Title: Length standards and the twin paradox in the special theory of relativity
Author(s): Carrubba, James G.
Doctoral Committee Chair(s): Stone, M
Department / Program: Physics
Discipline: Physics
Degree: Ph.D.
Genre: Dissertation
Subject(s): length standards twin paradox special theory of relativity
Abstract: In this Thesis I work towards a discussion of several resolutions of the Twin Paradox by exploring the Lorentz transformations. I begin by asking what it means for a moving length to contract1 a question which obviously cannot be divorced from the propagation of length standards from one reference frame to another. I emphasize the conventionality of definitions of length. I go on to argue that it is the imposition of clock synchronization-the conventionality of one-way speeds-and not the effects of acceleration which leads to the asymmetry of light speed observed in the Sagnac effect; and further, that this asymmetry leads to apparent paradoxes which are easily resolved when we take into account general covariance. In subsequent discussion of light-speed conventionality, I prove that any transform which preserves synchronization consistent with Michelson-Morley must be a similarity transform; and use this to demonstrate that not all results which appear to depend on Special Relativity actually do. I conclude this Thesis with an argument that the Twin Paradox cannot be resolved consistently if we impose simultaneously all ·'physical" conditions which various resolutions impose in part.
Issue Date: 1997
Genre: Dissertation / Thesis
Type: Text
Language: English
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/2142/30773
Other Identifier(s): 4055726
Rights Information: ©1997 Carrubba
Date Available in IDEALS: 2012-04-26
 

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