The Speed of Light Analysis Essay

The Speed of Light Analysis Essay

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When a curious observer looks to the cosmos, he/she travels back in time hundreds, thousands, millions, even billions of years. The photons from the mysterious stars he/she is looking at have traveled through time at 186,000 miles per second, until his/her eyes caught them. Light is the one particle that sheds luminosity over everything, and is the only way of seeing the elusive and magnificent nature of the universe. But to understand light is too understand its speed—a speed so great that nothing with mass can ever reach it.
So what is the speed of light? It is 299, 792, 458 meters per second or 186,000 miles per second, but humans didn’t always know that light was this speed—at one point in time humans thought that light could travel any distance in no time at all. Later experiments were made to measure the exact speed, but lets start from the beginning.
One of the earliest questionings of the speed of light was done by a Greek Philosopher by the name of Empedocles. Empedocles taught that the universe was composed of fire, water, air, and earth. He also was the first to say that light had a finite speed. He proposed that light was something in motion and had to take time to travel. Aristotle thought that light is due to the occurrence of something—not any movement. Ptolemy and Euclid, two great mathematicians, talked about there new emission theory of vision, that told that light is emitted from the eye. Heron of Alexandria, an Egyptian mathematician, proposed the speed of light must be infinite, due to the distant objects appearing right as the opening of eyes occur. Johannes Kepler, the great astronomer of Germany, stood by the idea that the speed of light was infinite, because empty space has no obstacle to it. Without ...


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...ffect says: The faster you move with respect to an object, “O”, more time slows down for the object from your perspective. When all the way at the exact speed of light time would stop for O, from your perspective. This is what a photon experiences—when the photon is racing away from the deep space object it was conceived from it seems that a monumental time has passed for the photon to get to our eyes, but for the photon it would seem that no time would have passed at all.
If you also move toward O at a high velocity O will start to get skinnier and become compressed. At the speed of light, O will have zero length in the direction you are traveling. Lets say you are an F1 Racer, and you are on a straight race track traveling the speed of light, the track will be compressed to a length of zero the starting line and the finish line would be on top of each other.

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