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Lorentz Transformations

Length Contraction (or Lorentz Contraction)


Suppose that a ruler of rest length  is moving with constant speed v in the direction of its own length with respect to an observer. The observer, however, will observe the length to be

This formula is the so-called length contraction formula. Note that  for all speeds  , which means that the ruler is contracted according to the observer. Moving rulers are shorter! Note also, that the spatial dimensions perpendicular to the direction of motion, are not affected by the length contraction.


Related Laureate

 The Nobel Prize in Physics 1902 - Hendrik Antoon Lorentz »    

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