Lesson 1: Relativity  What is it?
Note: For Fermilab's Time Dilation Challenge and The Relativity Game, you need Shockwave. You may painlessly Download Shockwave here if you do not have it.Lesson 2: Time Dilation
Lesson 3: Length Contraction
Lesson 4: Relativistic Mass

Practice Problems? Consider a 3 x 10^{8} meter stick traveling past us at half the speed of light (50% c). We want to measure the length of this stick in the mover's frame of reference and the stationary frame of reference. To accomplish this, we will time how long it takes the 3.0 x 10^{8} meter stick to pass a set point in space. According to the mover for the mover, the meter stick is 3 x 10^{8} metes long. Since it is traveling at 50% c, the mover measures a time of 2.0 seconds (I want to see that calculation) to pass by the time both ends of the meter stick pass the point in space. See animation. (add animation and link) According to the stationary frame, the mover's stick takes a longer time to pass the point. Instead of 2 seconds, the stick, traveling at 50% c, takes 2.3094 seconds to pass the point in space. Since the mover was moving at 50% c, and the stationary frame timed the stick to take 2.3094 seconds to pass the point in space, the stationary frame calculates the stick's length to be 3.5 x 108 meters. Here, we need to make some distinctions. The stick is 3.0 x 108 meters in the frame that sees it at rest, its own. In the frame that sees it moving, it is longer! The above is wrong! Check out how to say it correclty and break this page up into parts b, c, and d for lesson 3. Also remember to consider calling this Level 3 and remember the game is a game of hunting for a ship headed toward different stars with a convict...you are a bounty hunter and you must arrive before convict to collect your bounty. Lesson 3: Length Contraction

© Brian Wegley, 1998
Comments and suggestions can be sent by email to Brian Wegley of Glenbrook South High School.. This page last updated on 7/23/98.