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This is an intriguing question. I am looking for ideas on the cause.
The keyword here is "relativistic." Due to the speed of light limit, a stationary observer will see that more and more energy will be required as you accelerate closer to the speed of light. Since mass can be defined as the resistance to acceleration, this stationary observer will come to the conclusion that your mass has increase.
Quote from: jeffreyHThis is an intriguing question. I am looking for ideas on the cause.Hi Jeff!I don't believe that you really wanted to ask What causes relativistic mass increase? because the correct and precise answer is An increase in speed. Please correct me if I'm wrong but I believe that what you're really seeking to understand is the explanation of the increase in mass due to an increase in speed. Is that correct? If so then the answer is simple: with an increase in speed comes an increase in time dilation and a decrease in length. The best way to understand all of this is to follow the derivation which shows the relationship between mass and speed. You can find if on my website at: http://www.newenglandphysics.org/physics_world/sr/inertial_mass.htmThere is an error in there somewhere which I've yet to correct. But if you follow it carefully then you'll find it. It's merely a typographical error.
Ok so I'll frame it differently. What causes the resistance to an increase in velocity?