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Author Topic: If light wins the speed race, what comes second?  (Read 2301 times)

Offline imd321

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« on: 21/09/2010 06:48:36 »
Since nothing travels faster than light (or other electromagnetic radiation), what travels second fastest.  Is there some natural upper limit on the speed which can be attained by other things or could anything theoretically reach the speed of light e.g could a single atom ever travel at the speed of light, could sound travel at the speed of light etc?


 

Offline Bored chemist

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #1 on: 21/09/2010 07:34:26 »
The strange answer is "me".
If you find, for example, a very fast moving electron somewhere then, from the electron's point of view I am very fast, but it is stationary.
Of course, this holds for anyone or anything.
From the practical point of view I think neutrinos may win. It's hard to tell if they travel at c or a little slower.
 

Offline syhprum

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #2 on: 21/09/2010 13:55:58 »
I think the Neutrinos from the 1987 supernovae arrived about 4 hours later than the Photons.
« Last Edit: 21/09/2010 18:42:54 by syhprum »
 

Offline tommya300

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #3 on: 21/09/2010 21:37:59 »
Where ever light's path travels, it will always find that darkness was there first.
 

Offline LeeE

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #4 on: 21/09/2010 22:32:28 »
I'd go with neutrinos too.
 

Offline syhprum

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #5 on: 22/09/2010 09:29:32 »
It is an interesting proposition that sound could travel faster than light, is it possible to calculate how fast a sound wave would travel thru a Neutron star ?.
 

Offline LeeE

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #6 on: 22/09/2010 22:07:03 »
I was thinking about the speed of sound in neutronium too, but it's still going to be < 'c' because it requires the movement of matter.
 

Offline Murchie85

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #7 on: 23/09/2010 00:08:48 »
Neutrino is the obvious answer for sure (possibly due to its finite or near zero mass) , I would say there are a few other candidates, for example in the standford accelerator electrons are sped up to 99.9999% the speed of light. Also if the theoretical particles tachyon's exist then they would actually be faster than the speed of light (this has obvious temporal implications) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tachyon 
 

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If light wins the speed race, what comes second?
« Reply #7 on: 23/09/2010 00:08:48 »

 

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