Showing posts with label Relativistic Muons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Relativistic Muons. Show all posts

Friday, September 23, 2011

Measurement of the neutrino velocity with the OPERA detector

New results from OPERA on neutrino propertieslive from Main Amphitheatre.

“This result comes as a complete surprise,” said OPERA spokesperson, Antonio Ereditato of the University of Bern. “After many months of studies and cross checks we have not found any instrumental effect that could explain the result of the measurement. While OPERA researchers will continue their studies, we are also looking forward to independent measurements to fully assess the nature of this observation.” 

 “When an experiment finds an apparently unbelievable result and can find no artefact of the measurement to account for it, it’s normal procedure to invite broader scrutiny, and this is exactly what the OPERA collaboration is doing, it’s good scientific practice,” said CERN Research Director Sergio Bertolucci. “If this measurement is confirmed, it might change our view of physics, but we need to be sure that there are no other, more mundane, explanations. That will require independent measurements.”See:OPERA experiment reports anomaly in flight time of neutrinos from CERN to Gran Sasso

Have we considered their mediums of expression to know that we have witnessed Cerenkov radiation as a process in the faster than light, to know the circumstances of such expressions to have been understood as backdrop measures of processes we are familiar with. Explain the history of particulate expressions from vast distances across our universe?

The OPERA Detector

This is something very different though and it will be very interesting the dialogue and thoughts shared so as to look at the evidence in a way that helps us to consider what is sound in it's understanding, as speed of light.

See Also:

Thursday, December 09, 2010

Time Dilation

....... is a phenomenon (or two phenomena, as mentioned below) described by the theory of relativity. It can be illustrated by supposing that two observers are in motion relative to each other, or differently situated with regard to nearby gravitational masses. They each carry a clock of identical construction and function. Then, the point of view of each observer will generally be that the other observer's clock is in error (has changed its rate).

Both causes (distance to gravitational mass and relative speed) can operate together.



Time dilation can arise from:
  1. the relative velocity of motion between two observers, or
  2. the difference in their distance from a gravitational mass.

Relative velocity time dilation

When two observers are in relative uniform motion and far away from any gravitational mass, the point of view of each will be that the other's (moving) clock is ticking at a slower rate than the local clock. The faster the relative velocity, the greater the magnitude of time dilation. This case is sometimes called special relativistic time dilation. It is often interpreted as time "slowing down" for the other (moving) clock. But that is only true from the physical point of view of the local observer, and of others at relative rest (i.e. in the local observer's frame of reference). The point of view of the other observer will be that again the local clock (this time the other clock) is correct and it is the distant moving one that is slow. From a local perspective, time registered by clocks that are at rest with respect to the local frame of reference (and far from any gravitational mass) always appears to pass at the same rate.[1]

Gravitational time dilation

There is another case of time dilation, where both observers are differently situated in their distance from a significant gravitational mass, such as (for terrestrial observers) the Earth or the Sun. One may suppose for simplicity that the observers are at relative rest (which is not the case of two observers both rotating with the Earth—an extra factor described below). In the simplified case, the general theory of relativity describes how, for both observers, the clock that is closer to the gravitational mass, i.e. deeper in its "gravity well", appears to go slower than the clock that is more distant from the mass (or higher in altitude away from the center of the gravitational mass). That does not mean that the two observers fully agree: each still makes the local clock to be correct; the observer more distant from the mass (higher in altitude) measures the other clock (closer to the mass, lower in altitude) to be slower than the local correct rate, and the observer situated closer to the mass (lower in altitude) measures the other clock (farther from the mass, higher in altitude) to be faster than the local correct rate. They agree at least that the clock nearer the mass is slower in rate and on the ratio of the difference.

Time dilation: special vs. general theories of relativity

In Albert Einstein's theories of relativity, time dilation in these two circumstances can be summarized:
  • In special relativity (or, hypothetically far from all gravitational mass), clocks that are moving with respect to an inertial system of observation are measured to be running slower. This effect is described precisely by the Lorentz transformation.
Thus, in special relativity, the time dilation effect is reciprocal: as observed from the point of view of either of two clocks which are in motion with respect to each other, it will be the other clock that is time dilated. (This presumes that the relative motion of both parties is uniform; that is, they do not accelerate with respect to one another during the course of the observations.)

In contrast, gravitational time dilation (as treated in general relativity) is not reciprocal: an observer at the top of a tower will observe that clocks at ground level tick slower, and observers on the ground will agree about that, i.e. about the direction and the ratio of the difference. There is not full agreement, all the observers make their own local clocks out to be correct, but the direction and ratio of gravitational time dilation is agreed by all observers, independent of their altitude.

Simple inference of time dilation due to relative velocity

Observer at rest sees time 2L/c.

Observer moving parallel relative to setup, sees longer path, time > 2L/c, same speed c.
Time dilation can be inferred from the observed fact of the constancy of the speed of light in all reference frames. [2] [3] [4] [5]

This constancy of the speed of light means, counter to intuition, that speeds of material objects and light are not additive. It is not possible to make the speed of light appear faster by approaching at speed towards the material source that is emitting light. It is not possible to make the speed of light appear slower by receding from the source at speed. From one point of view, it is the implications of this unexpected constancy that take away from constancies expected elsewhere.

Consider a simple clock consisting of two mirrors A and B, between which a light pulse is bouncing. The separation of the mirrors is L and the clock ticks once each time it hits a given mirror.
In the frame where the clock is at rest (diagram at right), the light pulse traces out a path of length 2L and the period of the clock is 2L divided by the speed of light:
\Delta t = \frac{2 L}{c}.
From the frame of reference of a moving observer traveling at the speed v (diagram at lower right), the light pulse traces out a longer, angled path. The second postulate of special relativity states that the speed of light is constant in all frames, which implies a lengthening of the period of this clock from the moving observer's perspective. That is to say, in a frame moving relative to the clock, the clock appears to be running more slowly. Straightforward application of the Pythagorean theorem leads to the well-known prediction of special relativity:

The total time for the light pulse to trace its path is given by
\Delta t' = \frac{2 D}{c}.
The length of the half path can be calculated as a function of known quantities as
D = \sqrt{\left (\frac{1}{2}v \Delta t'\right )^2+L^2}.
Substituting D from this equation into the previous and solving for Δt' gives:
\Delta t' = \frac{2L/c}{\sqrt{1-v^2/c^2}}
and thus, with the definition of Δt:
\Delta t' = \frac{\Delta t}{\sqrt{1-v^2/c^2}}
which expresses the fact that for the moving observer the period of the clock is longer than in the frame of the clock itself.

Time dilation due to relative velocity symmetric between observers

Common sense would dictate that if time passage has slowed for a moving object, the moving object would observe the external world to be correspondingly "sped up". Counterintuitively, special relativity predicts the opposite.

A similar oddity occurs in everyday life. If Sam sees Abigail at a distance she appears small to him and at the same time Sam appears small to Abigail. Being very familiar with the effects of perspective, we see no mystery or a hint of a paradox in this situation.[6]

One is accustomed to the notion of relativity with respect to distance: the distance from Los Angeles to New York is by convention the same as the distance from New York to Los Angeles. On the other hand, when speeds are considered, one thinks of an object as "actually" moving, overlooking that its motion is always relative to something else — to the stars, the ground or to oneself. If one object is moving with respect to another, the latter is moving with respect to the former and with equal relative speed.

In the special theory of relativity, a moving clock is found to be ticking slowly with respect to the observer's clock. If Sam and Abigail are on different trains in near-lightspeed relative motion, Sam measures (by all methods of measurement) clocks on Abigail's train to be running slowly and similarly, Abigail measures clocks on Sam's train to be running slowly.

Note that in all such attempts to establish "synchronization" within the reference system, the question of whether something happening at one location is in fact happening simultaneously with something happening elsewhere, is of key importance. Calculations are ultimately based on determining which events are simultaneous. Furthermore, establishing simultaneity of events separated in space necessarily requires transmission of information between locations, which by itself is an indication that the speed of light will enter the determination of simultaneity.

It is a natural and legitimate question to ask how, in detail, special relativity can be self-consistent if clock A is time-dilated with respect to clock B and clock B is also time-dilated with respect to clock A. It is by challenging the assumptions built into the common notion of simultaneity that logical consistency can be restored. Simultaneity is a relationship between an observer in a particular frame of reference and a set of events. By analogy, left and right are accepted to vary with the position of the observer, because they apply to a relationship. In a similar vein, Plato explained that up and down describe a relationship to the earth and one would not fall off at the antipodes.

Within the framework of the theory and its terminology there is a relativity of simultaneity that affects how the specified events are aligned with respect to each other by observers in relative motion. Because the pairs of putatively simultaneous moments are identified differently by different observers (as illustrated in the twin paradox article), each can treat the other clock as being the slow one without relativity being self-contradictory. This can be explained in many ways, some of which follow.

Temporal coordinate systems and clock synchronization

In Relativity, temporal coordinate systems are set up using a procedure for synchronizing clocks, discussed by Poincaré (1900) in relation to Lorentz's local time (see relativity of simultaneity). It is now usually called the Einstein synchronization procedure, since it appeared in his 1905 paper.

An observer with a clock sends a light signal out at time t1 according to his clock. At a distant event, that light signal is reflected back to, and arrives back to the observer at time t2 according to his clock. Since the light travels the same path at the same rate going both out and back for the observer in this scenario, the coordinate time of the event of the light signal being reflected for the observer tE is tE = (t1 + t2) / 2. In this way, a single observer's clock can be used to define temporal coordinates which are good anywhere in the universe.

Symmetric time dilation occurs with respect to temporal coordinate systems set up in this manner. It is an effect where another clock is being viewed as running slowly by an observer. Observers do not consider their own clock time to be time-dilated, but may find that it is observed to be time-dilated in another coordinate system.

Overview of formulae

Time dilation due to relative velocity

Lorentz factor as a function of speed (in natural units where c=1). Notice that for small speeds (less than 0.1), γ is approximately 1
The formula for determining time dilation in special relativity is:
 \Delta t' = \gamma \, \Delta t = \frac{\Delta t}{\sqrt{1-v^2/c^2}} \,
where Δt is the time interval between two co-local events (i.e. happening at the same place) for an observer in some inertial frame (e.g. ticks on his clock) – this is known as the proper time, Δt ' is the time interval between those same events, as measured by another observer, inertially moving with velocity v with respect to the former observer, v is the relative velocity between the observer and the moving clock, c is the speed of light, and
 \gamma = \frac{1}{\sqrt{1-v^2/c^2}} \,
is the Lorentz factor. Thus the duration of the clock cycle of a moving clock is found to be increased: it is measured to be "running slow". The range of such variances in ordinary life, where vc, even considering space travel, are not great enough to produce easily detectable time dilation effects and such vanishingly small effects can be safely ignored. It is only when an object approaches speeds on the order of 30,000 km/s (1/10 the speed of light) that time dilation becomes important.

Time dilation by the Lorentz factor was predicted by Joseph Larmor (1897), at least for electrons orbiting a nucleus. Thus "... individual electrons describe corresponding parts of their orbits in times shorter for the [rest] system in the ratio :\scriptstyle \sqrt{1 - v^2/c^2}" (Larmor 1897). Time dilation of magnitude corresponding to this (Lorentz) factor has been experimentally confirmed, as described below.

Time dilation due to gravitation and motion together

Astronomical time scales and the GPS system represent significant practical applications, presenting problems that call for consideration of the combined effects of mass and motion in producing time dilation.
Relativistic time dilation effects, for the solar system and the Earth, have been evaluated from the starting point of an approximation to the Schwarzschild solution to the Einstein field equations. A timelike interval dtE in this metric can be approximated, when expressed in rectangular coordinates and when truncated of higher powers in 1/c2, in the form:[7][8]
 dt_E^2 = \left( 1-\frac{2GM_i}{r_i c^2} \right) dt_c^2 - \frac{dx^2+dy^2+dz^2}{c^2}, \,

dtE (expressed as a time-like interval) is a small increment forming part of an interval in the proper time tE (an interval that could be recorded on an atomic clock);
dtc is a small increment in the timelike coordinate tc ("coordinate time") of the clock's position in the chosen reference frame;
dx, dy and dz are small increments in three orthogonal space-like coordinates x, y, z of the clock's position in the chosen reference frame; and
GMi/ri represents a sum, to be designated U, of gravitational potentials due to the masses in the neighborhood, based on their distances ri from the clock. This sum of the GMi/ri is evaluated approximately, as a sum of Newtonian gravitational potentials (plus any tidal potentials considered), and is represented below as U (using the positive astronomical sign convention for gravitational potentials). The scope of the approximation may be extended to a case where U further includes effects of external masses other than the Mi, in the form of tidal gravitational potentials that prevail (due to the external masses) in a suitably small region of space around a point of the reference frame located somewhere in a gravity well due to those external masses, where the size of 'suitably small' remains to be investigated.[9]
From this, after putting the velocity of the clock (in the coordinates of the chosen reference frame) as
v^2=\frac{dx^2+dy^2+dz^2}{dt_c^2}, \,

(then taking the square root and truncating after binomial expansion, neglecting terms beyond the first power in 1/c2), a relation between the rate of the proper time and the rate of the coordinate time can be obtained as the differential equation[10]
\frac{dt_E}{dt_c}= 1-\frac{U}{c^2}-\frac{v^2}{2c^2}. \,

Equation (3) represents combined time dilations due to mass and motion, approximated to the first order in powers of 1/c2. The approximation can be applied to a number of the weak-field situations found around the Earth and in the solar-system. It can be thought of as relating the rate of proper time tE that can be measured by a clock, with the rate of a coordinate time tc.

In particular, for explanatory purposes, the time-dilation equation (3) provides a way of conceiving coordinate time, by showing that the rate of the clock would be exactly equal to the rate of the coordinate time if this "coordinate clock" could be situated
(a) hypothetically outside all relevant 'gravity wells', e.g. remote from all gravitational masses Mi, (so that U=0), and also
(b) at rest in relation to the chosen system of coordinates (so that v=0).
Equation (3) has been developed and integrated for the case where the reference frame is the solar system barycentric ('ssb') reference frame, to show the (time-varying) time dilation between the ssb coordinate time and local time at the Earth's surface: the main effects found included a mean time dilation of about 0.49 second per year (slower at the Earth's surface than for the ssb coordinate time), plus periodic modulation terms of which the largest has an annual period and an amplitude of about 1.66 millisecond.[11][12]

Equation (3) has also been developed and integrated for the case of clocks at or near the Earth's surface. For clocks fixed to the rotating Earth's surface at mean sea level, regarded as a surface of the geoid, the sum ( U + v2/2 ) is a very nearly constant geopotential, and decreases with increasing height above sea level approximately as the product of the change in height and the gradient of the geopotential. This has been evaluated as a fractional increase in clock rate of about 1.1x10−13 per kilometer of height above sea level due to a decrease in combined rate of time dilation with increasing altitude. The value of dtE/dtc at height falls to be compared with the corresponding value at mean sea level.[13] (Both values are slightly below 1, the value at height being a little larger (closer to 1) than the value at sea level.)

A fuller development of equation (3) for the near-Earth situation has been used to evaluate the combined time dilations relative to the Earth's surface experienced along the trajectories of satellites of the GPS global positioning system. The resulting values (in this case they are relativistic increases in the rate of the satellite-borne clocks, by about 38 microseconds per day) form the basis for adjustments essential for the functioning of the system.[14]

This gravitational time dilation relationship has been used in the synchronization or correlation of atomic clocks used to implement and maintain the atomic time scale TAI, where the different clocks are located at different heights above sea level, and since 1977 have had their frequencies steered to compensate for the differences of rate with height.[15]

In pulsar timing, the advance or retardation of the pulsar phase due to gravitational and motional time dilation is called the "Einstein Delay".

Experimental confirmation

Time dilation has been tested a number of times. The routine work carried on in particle accelerators since the 1950s, such as those at CERN, is a continuously running test of the time dilation of special relativity. The specific experiments include:

Velocity time dilation tests

  • Ives and Stilwell (1938, 1941), "An experimental study of the rate of a moving clock", in two parts. The stated purpose of these experiments was to verify the time dilation effect, predicted by Lamor-Lorentz ether theory, due to motion through the ether using Einstein's suggestion that Doppler effect in canal rays would provide a suitable experiment. These experiments measured the Doppler shift of the radiation emitted from cathode rays, when viewed from directly in front and from directly behind. The high and low frequencies detected were not the classical values predicted.
f_\mathrm{detected} = \frac{f_\mathrm{moving}}{1 - v/c} and \frac{f_\mathrm{moving}}{1+v/c}\,=\, \frac{f_\mathrm{rest}}{1 - v/c} and \frac{f_\mathrm{rest}}{1+v/c}
i.e. for sources with invariant frequencies f_\mathrm{moving}\, = f_\mathrm{rest} The high and low frequencies of the radiation from the moving sources were measured as
f_\mathrm{detected} = f_\mathrm{rest}\sqrt{\left(1 + v/c\right)/\left(1 - v/c\right) } and f_\mathrm{rest}\sqrt{\left(1 - v/c\right)/\left(1 + v/c\right)}
as deduced by Einstein (1905) from the Lorentz transformation, when the source is running slow by the Lorentz factor.
  • Rossi and Hall (1941) compared the population of cosmic-ray-produced muons at the top of a mountain to that observed at sea level. Although the travel time for the muons from the top of the mountain to the base is several muon half-lives, the muon sample at the base was only moderately reduced. This is explained by the time dilation attributed to their high speed relative to the experimenters. That is to say, the muons were decaying about 10 times slower than if they were at rest with respect to the experimenters.
  • Hasselkamp, Mondry, and Scharmann[16] (1979) measured the Doppler shift from a source moving at right angles to the line of sight (the transverse Doppler shift). The most general relationship between frequencies of the radiation from the moving sources is given by:
f_\mathrm{detected} = f_\mathrm{rest}{\left(1 - \frac{v}{c} \cos\phi\right)/\sqrt{1 - {v^2}/{c^2}} }
as deduced by Einstein (1905)[1]. For \phi = 90^\circ (\cos\phi = 0\,) this reduces to fdetected = frestγ. Thus there is no transverse Doppler shift, and the lower frequency of the moving source can be attributed to the time dilation effect alone.
  • In 2010 time dilation was observed at speeds of less than 10 meters per second using optical atomic clocks connected by 75 meters of optical fiber.[17]

Gravitational time dilation tests

  • Pound, Rebka in 1959 measured the very slight gravitational red shift in the frequency of light emitted at a lower height, where Earth's gravitational field is relatively more intense. The results were within 10% of the predictions of general relativity. Later Pound and Snider (in 1964) derived an even closer result of 1%. This effect is as predicted by gravitational time dilation.
  • In 2010 gravitational time dilation was measured at the Earth's surface with a height difference of only one meter, using optical atomic clocks.[17]

Velocity and gravitational time dilation combined-effect tests

  • Hafele and Keating, in 1971, flew caesium atomic clocks east and west around the Earth in commercial airliners, to compare the elapsed time against that of a clock that remained at the US Naval Observatory. Two opposite effects came into play. The clocks were expected to age more quickly (show a larger elapsed time) than the reference clock, since they were in a higher (weaker) gravitational potential for most of the trip (c.f. Pound, Rebka). But also, contrastingly, the moving clocks were expected to age more slowly because of the speed of their travel. The gravitational effect was the larger, and the clocks suffered a net gain in elapsed time. To within experimental error, the net gain was consistent with the difference between the predicted gravitational gain and the predicted velocity time loss. In 2005, the National Physical Laboratory in the United Kingdom reported their limited replication of this experiment.[18] The NPL experiment differed from the original in that the caesium clocks were sent on a shorter trip (London–Washington D.C. return), but the clocks were more accurate. The reported results are within 4% of the predictions of relativity.
  • The Global Positioning System can be considered a continuously operating experiment in both special and general relativity. The in-orbit clocks are corrected for both special and general relativistic time dilation effects as described above, so that (as observed from the Earth's surface) they run at the same rate as clocks on the surface of the Earth. In addition, but not directly time dilation related, general relativistic correction terms are built into the model of motion that the satellites broadcast to receivers — uncorrected, these effects would result in an approximately 7-metre (23 ft) oscillation in the pseudo-ranges measured by a receiver over a cycle of 12 hours.

Muon lifetime

A comparison of muon lifetimes at different speeds is possible. In the laboratory, slow muons are produced, and in the atmosphere very fast moving muons are introduced by cosmic rays. Taking the muon lifetime at rest as the laboratory value of 2.22 μs, the lifetime of a cosmic ray produced muon traveling at 98% of the speed of light is about five times longer, in agreement with observations.[19] In this experiment the "clock" is the time taken by processes leading to muon decay, and these processes take place in the moving muon at its own "clock rate", which is much slower than the laboratory clock.

Time dilation and space flight

Time dilation would make it possible for passengers in a fast-moving vehicle to travel further into the future while aging very little, in that their great speed slows down the rate of passage of on-board time. That is, the ship's clock (and according to relativity, any human travelling with it) shows less elapsed time than the clocks of observers on Earth. For sufficiently high speeds the effect is dramatic. For example, one year of travel might correspond to ten years at home. Indeed, a constant 1 g acceleration would permit humans to travel as far as light has been able to travel since the big bang (some 13.7 billion light years) in one human lifetime. The space travellers could return to Earth billions of years in the future. A scenario based on this idea was presented in the novel Planet of the Apes by Pierre Boulle.

A more likely use of this effect would be to enable humans to travel to nearby stars without spending their entire lives aboard the ship. However, any such application of time dilation during Interstellar travel would require the use of some new, advanced method of propulsion. The Orion Project has been the only major attempt toward this idea.

Current space flight technology has fundamental theoretical limits based on the practical problem that an increasing amount of energy is required for propulsion as a craft approaches the speed of light. The likelihood of collision with small space debris and other particulate material is another practical limitation. At the velocities presently attained, however, time dilation is not a factor in space travel. Travel to regions of space-time where gravitational time dilation is taking place, such as within the gravitational field of a black hole but outside the event horizon (perhaps on a hyperbolic trajectory exiting the field), could also yield results consistent with present theory.

Time dilation at constant acceleration

In special relativity, time dilation is most simply described in circumstances where relative velocity is unchanging. Nevertheless, the Lorentz equations allow one to calculate proper time and movement in space for the simple case of a spaceship whose acceleration, relative to some referent object in uniform (i.e. constant velocity) motion, equals g throughout the period of measurement.

Let t be the time in an inertial frame subsequently called the rest frame. Let x be a spatial coordinate, and let the direction of the constant acceleration as well as the spaceship's velocity (relative to the rest frame) be parallel to the x-axis. Assuming the spaceship's position at time t = 0 being x = 0 and the velocity being v0 and defining the following abbreviation
\gamma_0 := \frac{1}{\sqrt{1-v_0^2/c^2}},
the following formulas hold:[20]
x(t) = \frac {c^2}{g} \left( \sqrt{1 + \frac{\left(gt + v_0\gamma_0\right)^2}{c^2}} -\gamma_0 \right).
v(t) =\frac{gt + v_0\gamma_0}{\sqrt{1 + \frac{ \left(gt + v_0\gamma_0\right)^2}{c^2}}}.
Proper time:
\tau(t) = \tau_0 + \int_0^t \sqrt{ 1 - \left( \frac{v(t')}{c} \right)^2 } dt'
In the case where v(0) = v0 = 0 and τ(0) = τ0 = 0 the integral can be expressed as a logarithmic function or, equivalently, as an inverse hyperbolic function:
\tau(t) = \frac{c}{g} \ln \left(  \frac{gt}{c} + \sqrt{ 1 + \left( \frac{gt}{c} \right)^2 } \right) = \frac{c}{g} \operatorname {arsinh} \left( \frac{gt}{c} \right) .

Spacetime geometry of velocity time dilation

Time dilation in transverse motion
The green dots and red dots in the animation represent spaceships. The ships of the green fleet have no velocity relative to each other, so for the clocks onboard the individual ships the same amount of time elapses relative to each other, and they can set up a procedure to maintain a synchronized standard fleet time. The ships of the "red fleet" are moving with a velocity of 0.866 of the speed of light with respect to the green fleet.
The blue dots represent pulses of light. One cycle of light-pulses between two green ships takes two seconds of "green time", one second for each leg.

As seen from the perspective of the reds, the transit time of the light pulses they exchange among each other is one second of "red time" for each leg. As seen from the perspective of the greens, the red ships' cycle of exchanging light pulses travels a diagonal path that is two light-seconds long. (As seen from the green perspective the reds travel 1.73 (\sqrt{3}) light-seconds of distance for every two seconds of green time.)
One of the red ships emits a light pulse towards the greens every second of red time. These pulses are received by ships of the green fleet with two-second intervals as measured in green time. Not shown in the animation is that all aspects of physics are proportionally involved. The light pulses that are emitted by the reds at a particular frequency as measured in red time are received at a lower frequency as measured by the detectors of the green fleet that measure against green time, and vice versa.

The animation cycles between the green perspective and the red perspective, to emphasize the symmetry. As there is no such thing as absolute motion in relativity (as is also the case for Newtonian mechanics), both the green and the red fleet are entitled to consider themselves motionless in their own frame of reference.
Again, it is vital to understand that the results of these interactions and calculations reflect the real state of the ships as it emerges from their situation of relative motion. It is not a mere quirk of the method of measurement or communication.

See also


  1. ^ For sources on special relativistic time dilation, see Albert Einstein's own popular exposition, published in English translation (1920) as "Relativity: The Special and General Theory", especially at "8: On the Idea of Time in Physics", and in following sections 9–12. See also the articles Special relativity, Lorentz transformation and Relativity of simultaneity.
  2. ^ Cassidy, David C.; Holton, Gerald James; Rutherford, Floyd James (2002), Understanding Physics, Springer-Verlag New York, Inc, ISBN 0-387-98756-8, , Chapter 9 §9.6, p. 422
  3. ^ Cutner, Mark Leslie (2003), Astronomy, A Physical Perspective, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 0-521-82196-7, , Chapter 7 §7.2, p. 128
  4. ^ Lerner, Lawrence S. (1996), Physics for Scientists and Engineers, Volume 2, Jones and Bertlett Publishers, Inc, ISBN 0-7637-0460-1, , Chapter 38 §38.4, p. 1051,1052
  5. ^ Ellis, George F. R.; Williams, Ruth M. (2000), Flat and Curved Space-times, Second Edition, Oxford University Press Inc, New York, ISBN 0-19-850657-0, , Chapter 3 §1.3, p. 28-29
  6. ^ Adams, Steve (1997), Relativity: an introduction to space-time physics, CRC Press, p. 54, ISBN 0-748-40621-2, , Section 2.5, page 54
  7. ^ See T D Moyer (1981a), "Transformation from proper time on Earth to coordinate time in solar system barycentric space-time frame of reference", Celestial Mechanics 23 (1981) pages 33-56, equations 2 and 3 at pages 35-6 combined here and divided throughout by c2.
  8. ^ A version of the same relationship can also be seen in Neil Ashby (2002), "Relativity and the Global Positioning System", Physics Today (May 2002), at equation (2).
  9. ^ Such tidal effects can also be seen included in some of the relations shown in Neil Ashby (2002), cited above.
  10. ^ (This is equation (6) at page 36 of T D Moyer (1981a), cited above.)
  11. ^ G M Clemence & V Szebehely, "Annual variation of an atomic clock", Astronomical Journal, Vol.72 (1967), p.1324-6.
  12. ^ T D Moyer (1981b), "Transformation from proper time on Earth to coordinate time in solar system barycentric space-time frame of reference" (Part 2), Celestial Mechanics 23 (1981) pages 57-68.
  13. ^ J B Thomas (1975), "Reformulation of the relativistic conversion between coordinate time and atomic time", Astronomical Journal, vol.80, May 1975, p.405-411.
  14. ^ See Neil Ashby (2002), cited above; also in article Global Positioning System the section Special and general relativity and further sources cited there.
  15. ^ B Guinot (2000), "History of the Bureau International de l'Heure", ASP Conference Proceedings vol.208 (2000), pp.175-184, at p.182.
  16. ^ "Journal Article". SpringerLink. Retrieved 2009-10-18. 
  17. ^ a b Chou, C. W.; Hume, D. B.; Rosenband, T.; Wineland, D. J. (2010). "Optical Clocks and Relativity". Science 329: 1630. doi:10.1126/science.1192720.  edit
  18. ^
  19. ^ JV Stewart (2001), Intermediate electromagnetic theory, Singapore: World Scientific, p. 705, ISBN 9810244703, 
  20. ^ Iorio, Lorenzo (27-Jun-2004). "An analytical treatment of the Clock Paradox in the framework of the Special and General Theories of Relativity".  (Equations (3), (4), (6), (9) on pages 5-6)
  • Callender, Craig & Edney, Ralph (2001), Introducing Time, Icon, ISBN 1-84046-592-1 
  • Einstein, A. (1905) "Zur Elektrodynamik bewegter Körper", Annalen der Physik, 17, 891. English translation: On the electrodynamics of moving bodies
  • Einstein, A. (1907) "Über eine Möglichkeit einer Prüfung des Relativitätsprinzips", Annalen der Physik.
  • Hasselkamp, D., Mondry, E. and Scharmann, A. (1979) "Direct Observation of the Transversal Doppler-Shift", Z. Physik A 289, 151–155
  • Ives, H. E. and Stilwell, G. R. (1938), "An experimental study of the rate of a moving clock", J. Opt. Soc. Am, 28, 215–226
  • Ives, H. E. and Stilwell, G. R. (1941), "An experimental study of the rate of a moving clock. II", J. Opt. Soc. Am, 31, 369–374
  • Joos, G. (1959) Lehrbuch der Theoretischen Physik, 11. Auflage, Leipzig; Zweites Buch, Sechstes Kapitel, § 4: Bewegte Bezugssysteme in der Akustik. Der Doppler-Effekt.
  • Larmor, J. (1897) "On a dynamical theory of the electric and luminiferous medium", Phil. Trans. Roy. Soc. 190, 205–300 (third and last in a series of papers with the same name).
  • Poincaré, H. (1900) "La theorie de Lorentz et la Principe de Reaction", Archives Neerlandaies, V, 253–78.
  • Reinhardt et al. Test of relativistic time dilation with fast optical atomic clocks at different velocities (Nature 2007)
  • Rossi, B and Hall, D. B. Phys. Rev., 59, 223 (1941).
  • NIST Two way time transfer for satellites
  • Voigt, W. "Ueber das Doppler'sche princip" Nachrichten von der Königlicher Gesellschaft der Wissenschaften zu Göttingen, 2, 41–51.

External links


The Moon's cosmic ray shadow, as seen in secondary muons generated by cosmic rays in the atmosphere, and detected 700 meters below ground, at the Soudan II detector.
Composition: Elementary particle
Particle statistics: Fermionic
Group: Lepton
Generation: Second
Interaction: Gravity, Electromagnetic,
Symbol(s): μ
Antiparticle: Antimuon (μ+)
Discovered: Carl D. Anderson (1936)
Mass: 105.65836668(38) MeV/c2
Mean lifetime: 2.197034(21)×10−6 s[1]
Electric charge: −1 e
Color charge: None
Spin: 12

The muon (from the Greek letter mu (μ) used to represent it) is an elementary particle similar to the electron, with a negative electric charge and a spin of ½. Together with the electron, the tau, and the three neutrinos, it is classified as a lepton. It is an unstable subatomic particle with the second longest mean lifetime (2.2 µs), exceeded only by that of the free neutron (~15 minutes). Like all elementary particles, the muon has a corresponding antiparticle of opposite charge but equal mass and spin: the antimuon (also called a positive muon). Muons are denoted by μ and antimuons by μ+. Muons were previously called mu mesons, but are not classified as mesons by modern particle physicists (see History).

Muons have a mass of 105.7 MeV/c2, which is about 200 times the mass of an electron. Since the muon's interactions are very similar to those of the electron, a muon can be thought of as a much heavier version of the electron. Due to their greater mass, muons are not as sharply accelerated when they encounter electromagnetic fields, and do not emit as much bremsstrahlung radiation. Thus muons of a given energy penetrate matter far more deeply than electrons, since the deceleration of electrons and muons is primarily due to energy loss by this mechanism. So-called "secondary muons", generated by cosmic rays hitting the atmosphere, can penetrate to the Earth's surface and into deep mines.

As with the case of the other charged leptons, the muon has an associated muon neutrino. Muon neutrinos are denoted by νμ.



Muons were discovered by Carl D. Anderson and Seth Neddermeyer at Caltech in 1936, while studying cosmic radiation. Anderson had noticed particles that curved differently from electrons and other known particles when passed through a magnetic field. They were negatively charged but curved less sharply than electrons, but more sharply than protons, for particles of the same velocity. It was assumed that the magnitude of their negative electric charge was equal to that of the electron, and so to account for the difference in curvature, it was supposed that their mass was greater than an electron but smaller than a proton. Thus Anderson initially called the new particle a mesotron, adopting the prefix meso- from the Greek word for "mid-". Shortly thereafter, additional particles of intermediate mass were discovered, and the more general term meson was adopted to refer to any such particle. To differentiate between different types of mesons, the mesotron was in 1947 renamed the mu meson (the Greek letter μ (mu) corresponds to m).
It was soon found that the mu meson significantly differed from other mesons: for example, its decay products included a neutrino and an antineutrino, rather than just one or the other, as was observed with other mesons. Other mesons were eventually understood to be hadrons—that is, particles made of quarks—and thus subject to the residual strong force. In the quark model, a meson is composed of exactly two quarks (a quark and antiquark) unlike baryons, which are composed of three quarks. Mu mesons, however, were found to be fundamental particles (leptons) like electrons, with no quark structure. Thus, mu mesons were not mesons at all (in the new sense and use of the term meson), and so the term mu meson was abandoned, and replaced with the modern term muon.

Another particle (the pion, with which the muon was initially confused) had been predicted by theorist Hideki Yukawa:[2]

"It seems natural to modify the theory of Heisenberg and Fermi in the following way. The transition of a heavy particle from neutron state to proton state is not always accompanied by the mission of light particles. The transition is sometimes taken up by another heavy particle."

The existence of the muon was confirmed in 1937 by J. C. Street and E. C. Stevenson's cloud chamber experiment.[3] The discovery of the muon seemed so incongruous and surprising at the time that Nobel laureate I. I. Rabi famously quipped, "Who ordered that?"

In a 1941 experiment on Mount Washington in New Hampshire, muons were used to observe the time dilation predicted by special relativity for the first time.[4]

Muon sources

Since the production of muons requires an available center of momentum frame energy of 105.7 MeV, neither ordinary radioactive decay events nor nuclear fission and fusion events (such as those occurring in nuclear reactors and nuclear weapons) are energetic enough to produce muons. Only nuclear fission produces single-nuclear-event energies in this range, but do not produce muons as the production of a single muon would violate the conservation of quantum numbers (see under "muon decay" below).

On Earth, most naturally occurring muons are created by cosmic rays, which consist mostly of protons, many arriving from deep space at very high energy[5]

About 10,000 muons reach every square meter of the earth's surface a minute; these charged particles form as by-products of cosmic rays colliding with molecules in the upper atmosphere. Travelling at relativistic speeds, muons can penetrate tens of meters into rocks and other matter before attenuating as a result of absorption or deflection by other atoms.

When a cosmic ray proton impacts atomic nuclei of air atoms in the upper atmosphere, pions are created. These decay within a relatively short distance (meters) into muons (the pion's preferred decay product), and neutrinos. The muons from these high energy cosmic rays generally continue in about the same direction as the original proton, at a very high velocity. Although their lifetime without relativistic effects would allow a half-survival distance of only about 0.66 km (660 meters) at most (as seen from Earth) the time dilation effect of special relativity (from the viewpoint of the Earth) allows cosmic ray secondary muons to survive the flight to the Earth's surface, since in the Earth frame, the muons have a longer half-life due to their velocity. From the viewpoint (inertial frame) of the muon, on the other hand, it is the length contraction effect of special relativity which allows this penetration, since in the muon frame, its lifetime is unaffected, but the distance through the atmosphere and earth appears far shorter than these distances in the Earth rest-frame. Both are equally valid ways of explaining the fast muon's unusual survival over distances.

Since muons are unusually penetrative of ordinary matter, like neutrinos, they are also detectable deep underground (700 meters at the Soudan II detector) and underwater, where they form a major part of the natural background ionizing radiation. Like cosmic rays, as noted, this secondary muon radiation is also directional.

The same nuclear reaction described above (i.e. hadron-hadron impacts to produce pion beams, which then quickly decay to muon beams over short distances) is used by particle physicists to produce muon beams, such as the beam used for the muon g − 2 experiment.[6]

Muon decay

The most common decay of the muon
Muons are unstable elementary particles and are heavier than electrons and neutrinos but lighter than all other matter particles. They decay via the weak interaction. Because lepton numbers must be conserved, one of the product neutrinos of muon decay must be a muon-type neutrino and the other an electron-type antineutrino (antimuon decay produces the corresponding antiparticles, as detailed below). Because charge must be conserved, one of the products of muon decay is always an electron of the same charge as the muon (a positron if it is a positive muon). Thus all muons decay to at least an electron, and two neutrinos. Sometimes, besides these necessary products, additional other particles that have a net charge and spin of zero (i.e. a pair of photons, or an electron-positron pair), are produced.

The dominant muon decay mode (sometimes called the Michel decay after Louis Michel) is the simplest possible: the muon decays to an electron, an electron-antineutrino, and a muon-neutrino. Antimuons, in mirror fashion, most often decay to the corresponding antiparticles: a positron, an electron-neutrino, and a muon-antineutrino. In formulaic terms, these two decays are:
\mu^-\to e^- + \bar\nu_e + \nu_\mu,~~~\mu^+\to e^+ + \nu_e + \bar\nu_\mu.
The mean lifetime of the (positive) muon is 2.197 019 ± 0.000 021 μs[7]. The equality of the muon and anti-muon lifetimes has been established to better than one part in 104.

The tree-level muon decay width is
\Gamma=\frac{G_F^2 m_\mu^5}{192\pi^3}I\left(\frac{m_e^2}{m_\mu^2}\right),
where I(x) = 1 − 8x − 12x2lnx + 8x3x4;  G_F^2 is the Fermi coupling constant.
The decay distributions of the electron in muon decays have been parameterised using the so-called Michel parameters. The values of these four parameters are predicted unambiguously in the Standard Model of particle physics, thus muon decays represent a good test of the space-time structure of the weak interaction. No deviation from the Standard Model predictions has yet been found.

Certain neutrino-less decay modes are kinematically allowed but forbidden in the Standard Model. Examples forbidden by lepton flavour conservation are
\mu^-\to e^- + \gamma and \mu^-\to e^- + e^+ + e^-.
Observation of such decay modes would constitute clear evidence for physics beyond the Standard Model (BSM). Current experimental upper limits for the branching fractions of such decay modes are in the range 10−11 to 10−12.

Muonic atoms

The muon was the first elementary particle discovered that does not appear in ordinary atoms. Negative muons can, however, form muonic atoms (also called mu-mesic atoms), by replacing an electron in ordinary atoms. Muonic hydrogen atoms are much smaller than typical hydrogen atoms because the much larger mass of the muon gives it a much smaller ground-state wavefunction than is observed for the electron. In multi-electron atoms, when only one of the electrons is replaced by a muon, the size of the atom continues to be determined by the other electrons, and the atomic size is nearly unchanged. However, in such cases the orbital of the muon continues to be smaller and far closer to the nucleus than the atomic orbitals of the electrons.

A positive muon, when stopped in ordinary matter, can also bind an electron and form an exotic atom known as muonium (Mu) atom, in which the muon acts as the nucleus. The positive muon, in this context, can be considered a pseudo-isotope of hydrogen with one ninth of the mass of the proton. Because the reduced mass of muonium, and hence its Bohr radius, is very close to that of hydrogen[clarification needed], this short-lived "atom" behaves chemically — to a first approximation — like hydrogen, deuterium and tritium.

Use in measurement of the proton charge radius

The recent culmination of a twelve year experiment investigating the proton's charge radius involved the use of muonic hydrogen. This form of hydrogen is composed of a muon orbiting a proton[8]. The Lamb shift in muonic hydrogen was measured by driving the muon from the from its 2s state up to an excited 2p state using a laser. The frequency of the photon required to induce this transition was revealed to be 50 terahertz which, according to present theories of quantum electrodynamics, yields a value of 0.84184 ± 0.00067 femtometres for the charge radius of the proton.[9]

Anomalous magnetic dipole moment

The anomalous magnetic dipole moment is the difference between the experimentally observed value of the magnetic dipole moment and the theoretical value predicted by the Dirac equation. The measurement and prediction of this value is very important in the precision tests of QED (quantum electrodynamics). The E821 experiment at Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) studied the precession of muon and anti-muon in a constant external magnetic field as they circulated in a confining storage ring. The E821 Experiment reported the following average value (from the July 2007 review by Particle Data Group)
a = \frac{g-2}{2} = 0.00116592080(54)(33)
where the first errors are statistical and the second systematic.

The difference between the g-factors of the muon and the electron is due to their difference in mass. Because of the muon's larger mass, contributions to the theoretical calculation of its anomalous magnetic dipole moment from Standard Model weak interactions and from contributions involving hadrons are important at the current level of precision, whereas these effects are not important for the electron. The muon's anomalous magnetic dipole moment is also sensitive to contributions from new physics beyond the Standard Model, such as supersymmetry. For this reason, the muon's anomalous magnetic moment is normally used as a probe for new physics beyond the Standard Model rather than as a test of QED (Phys.Lett. B649, 173 (2007)).

See also


  1. ^ K. Nakamura et al. (Particle Data Group), J. Phys. G 37, 075021 (2010), URL:
  2. ^ Yukaya Hideka, On the Interaction of Elementary Particles 1, Proceedings of the Physico-Mathematical Society of Japan (3) 17, 48, pp 139-148 (1935). (Read 17 November 1934)
  3. ^ New Evidence for the Existence of a Particle Intermediate Between the Proton and Electron", Phys. Rev. 52, 1003 (1937).
  4. ^ David H. Frisch and James A. Smith, "Measurement of the Relativistic Time Dilation Using Muons", American Journal of Physics, 31, 342, 1963, cited by Michael Fowler, "Special Relativity: What Time is it?"
  5. ^ S. Carroll (2004). Spacetime and Geometry: An Introduction to General Relativity. Addison Wesly. p. 204
  6. ^ Brookhaven National Laboratory (30 July 2002). "Physicists Announce Latest Muon g-2 Measurement". Press release. Retrieved 2009-11-14. 
  7. ^ [1]
  8. ^ TRIUMF Muonic Hydrogen collaboration. "A brief description of Muonic Hydrogen research". Retrieved 2010-11-7
  9. ^ Pohl, Randolf et al. "The Size of the Proton" Nature 466, 213-216 (8 July 2010)

External links

Comment on Backreaction made to Steven

Hi Steven

Would we not be correct to say that unification with the small would be most apropos indeed with the large?

Pushing through that veil.

My interest with the QGP is well documented, as it presented itself "with an interesting location" with which to look at during the collision process.

Natural Microscopic blackhole creations? Are such conditions possible in the natural way of things? Although quickly dissipative, they leave their mark as Cerenkov effects.

As one looks toward the cosmos this reductionist process is how one might look at the cosmos at large, as to some of it's "motivations displayed" in the cosmos?

What conditions allow such reductionism at play to consider the end result of geometrical propensity as a message across the vast distance of space, so as to "count these effects" here on earth?

Let's say cosmos particle collisions and LHC are hand in hand "as to decay of the original particles in space" as they leave their imprint noticeably in the measures of SNO or Icecube, but help us discern further effects of that decay chain as to the constitutions of LHC energy progressions of particles in examination?

Emulating the conditions in LHC progression, adaptability seen then from such progressions, working to produce future understandings. Muon detections through the earth?

So "modeled experiments" in which "distillation of thought" are helped to be reduced too, in kind, lead to matter forming ideas with which to progress? Measure. Self evident.

You see the view has to be on two levels, maybe as a poet using words to describe, or as a artist, trying to explain the natural world. The natural consequence, of understanding of our humanity and it's continuations expressed as abstract thought of our interactions with the world at large, unseen, and miscomprehended?

Do you think Superstringy has anything to do with what I just told you here?:)


    Hi Steven,

    Maybe the following will help, and then I will lead up to a modern version for consideration, so you understand the relation.

    Keep Gran Sasso in your mind as you look at what I am giving you.

    The underground laboratory, which opened in 1989, with its low background radiation is used for experiments in particle and nuclear physics,including the study of neutrinos, high-energy cosmic rays, dark matter, nuclear decay, as well as geology, and biology-wiki

    Neutrinos, get set, go!

    This summer, CERN gave the starting signal for the long-distance neutrino race to Italy. The CNGS facility (CERN Neutrinos to Gran Sasso), embedded in the laboratory's accelerator complex, produced its first neutrino beam. For the first time, billions of neutrinos were sent through the Earth's crust to the Gran Sasso laboratory, 732 kilometres away in Italy, a journey at almost the speed of light which they completed in less than 2.5 milliseconds. The OPERA experiment at the Gran Sasso laboratory was then commissioned, recording the first neutrino tracks.

    Because I am a layman, does not reduce the understanding that I can have, that a scientist may have.

    Now for the esoteric :)

    Secrets of the Pyramids In a boon for archaeology, particle physicists plan to probe ancient structures for tombs and other hidden chambers. The key to the technology is the muon, a cousin of the electron that rains harmlessly from the sky.

    What kind of result would they get from using the muon. What will it tell them?:)