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A spaceship has a length of 200m in its own reference
frame. It is traveling at 0.95c relative to Earth.
Suppose that the tail of the spaceship emits a flash
of light. (a)In the reference frame of the spaceship,
how long does the light take to reach the nose?
(b)In the reference frame of the Earth, how long does
this take? Calculate the time directly from the motions of
the spaceship and the flash of light, and explain
why you cannot obtain the answer by applying the
time-dilation factor to the result from Part (a).
(from Ohanian's Principles of Physics)
I would rather have the
understanding of the problem and work from there.
The crazy thing is, although the book says "explain why you cannot obtain
the answer by applying the time-dilation factor to the result of Part
(a)", that is exactly what you have to do to get the answer they list!?
What's going on here? Am I missing some basic step or do I understand
even less than I previously thought!? Any insight or advice would be
Thanks in advance!