Glenbrook South Year-End Projects


Basic Research Questions

Your role as researcher for this project involves acquiring a wealth of technical information about Relativity. The process of conducting a literature search for the physics of discovering planets should yield some basic information about the Speical Relativity and the consequences of the theory. When finished, you should be able to conceptually and mathematically describe time dilation, length contraction, and relativistic mass. Some basic topics for research and ultimate discussion have been listed below to assist you in the initial stages of your literature search. The role of this listing is to provide an initial framework for your literature search and not a conclusive list of topics to be discussed. Your group will be required to answer a majority of the following questions. Your group is expected to go beyond these topics, exploring diverse areas of individual interest about the physics of discovering extrasolar planets.


1. What are Einstein's two postulates of Speical Relativity?

2. Discuss Time Dilation, Length Contraction and Relativistic Mass.

3. Why is it that no object with mass could achieve light speed in a vacuum?

4. What is the Twin Paradox.

5. Perform a basic, controlled study on Time Dilation with Mr. Henderson's Time Dilation Shock Wave.

6. Perform a basic, controlled study on Length Contraction with Mr. Henderson's Length Contraction Shock Wave.

7. What is a muon.

8. What happens to the lifetime of a muon as its speed increases.

9. A muon measures its own lifetime to be 2.2 micro-seconds. What is the lifetime of a muon traveling 0.999c?


Return to:


Project Home Page

The ET Project

Relativity Links

Basic Research Qs

Collabor'n Ideas

The Lab Report

Project Pitfalls

Scoring Rubrics

Project Timeline

Other GBS Resources

GBS Physics Page

Physics 163 Page

Physics Projects Home Page

The Refrigerator

The Physics Classroom

Multimedia Physics Studios

The GBS Physics staff invite you to send electronic mail:

Tom Henderson

Howard Jenewein

John Lewis

Neil Schmidgall

Dave Smith

Suzanne Webb

Brian Wegley

Questions and comments can be sent to Brian Wegley.

This page last updated on 3/20/98.