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Physics/length contraction

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Question
hi i want to know how lorentz realized that length contraction really happens, what paved him to that idea?
is it real contraction or illusion?
any proof of length contraction?
i don't want equations for length contraction but how he theorised it happens?

Answer
He theorized that a finite speed of light would literally mean a contraction in measured length.  You're confused when you ask if it's an illusion.  In this case, real and optical are one and the same.  Light is the thing with which we measure time and space in the end, and a finite speed of light leads to a very real dilation in time and contraction in length as objects approach or recede from you.  Read Einstein's original work "Relativity" about it, it's the definitive explanation you need.  Or a course on relativity.  You need to think differently when dealing with velocities close to the speed of light, you can't let your notion of optical illusions get in the way.

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Dr. Stephen O. Nelson

Expertise

I can answer most basic physics questions, physics questions about science fiction and everyday observations of physics, etc. I'm also usually good for science fair advice (I'm the regional science fair director). I do not answer homework problems. I will occasionally point out where a homework solution went wrong, though. I'm usually good at explaining odd observations that seem counterintuitive, energy science, nuclear physics, nuclear astrophysics, and alternative theories of physics are my specialties.

Experience

I was a physics professor at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin, research in nuclear technology and nuclear astrophysics. My travelling science show saw over 20,000 students of all ages. I taught physics, nuclear chemistry, radiation safety, vacuum technology, and answer tons of questions as I tour schools encouraging students to consider careers in science. I moved on to a non-academic job with more research just recently.

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Ph. D. from Duke University in physics, research in nuclear astrophysics reactions, gamma-ray astronomy technology, and advanced nuclear reactors.

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