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  #21  
Old 04-18-2008, 10:34 AM
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No, you got it, it's slower for the object traveling at light speed. If you were in a ship traveling at just under light speed 9 years would pass for you on a round trip to alpha centauri, but I'm not sure how many years would pass for everyone else, it'd be much more though.
Whew! I am glad I wasn't crazy.

I need to add: Even if I had the whole time dilation thing backwards, and time experienced by the traveler is greater than those left behind. That would mean a 9 year trip to the traveler would be a 1-8 year trip for those on earth. I can admit I may have things backwards, but in both cases I don't see how someone could travel the known galaxy, much less the universe, in one lifetime by going at light speed (even 99.999999999999% of light speed). I think Livingston agrees with this, but not FanWriter.

Someone HELP!! My head is spinning
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  #22  
Old 04-18-2008, 10:43 AM
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That's what I'm not sure about. If you take off to alpha centauri at near light speed, it'll take you about 9 years for a round trip to there and back to earth cause it's 4.5 light years away. The 9 years is the time that passes for everyone on earth, but time on the space ship is slowed down significantly, I just don't know to what degree. If you're right under the speed of light time for you could be at a near stand still cause according to the theory as you accelerate towards the speed of light will slow for you to the point where it becomes infinite. I'm not sure how to calculate this. I'll see if I can find anything.
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:45 AM
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Originally Posted by MrQ1701 View Post
Whew! I am glad I wasn't crazy.

I need to add: Even if I had the whole time dilation thing backwards, and time experienced by the traveler is greater than those left behind. That would mean a 9 year trip to the traveler would be a 1-8 year trip for those on earth. I can admit I may have things backwards, but in both cases I don't see how someone could travel the known galaxy, much less the universe, in one lifetime by going at light speed (even 99.999999999999% of light speed). I think Livingston agrees with this, but not FanWriter.

Someone HELP!! My head is spinning
I'm about to confuse you again Mrq, I was wrong in that quote you quoted me on, Fanwriter had it right. I was looking at it backwards, thinking that a traveler at near the speed of light will experience years going to the nearest star, that's not accurate, they would experience days more than likely cause time for them is slowed down. It is we who experience years, cause it takes light 4.5 years to get here from alpha centauri.
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:53 AM
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That's what I'm not sure about. If you take off to alpha centauri at near light speed, it'll take you about 9 years for a round trip to there and back to earth cause it's 4.5 light years away. The 9 years is the time that passes for everyone on earth, but time on the space ship is slowed down significantly, I just don't know to what degree. If you're right under the speed of light time for you could be at a near stand still cause according to the theory as you accelerate towards the speed of light will slow for you to the point where it becomes infinite. I'm not sure how to calculate this. I'll see if I can find anything.
So the 9 year round trip is for those on Earth? Ok, time for the traveler is LESS than those left behind. If I made this round trip and I was 31 at the start, I would not have experienced 9 years during the trip and be 40 when I returned to Earth? But everyone on earth that was 31 would be 40? So to me I may have only been traveling for 1 year? (I am just throwing out numbers to illustrate differences)

I guess the hard thing for me to wrap my mind around is that according to what has been said about time dilation for the traveler, it's like 99.999% the speed of light is actually far greater than the speed of light, if you forget about ever going back to your starting point!
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:55 AM
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Yeah, that's it exactly!
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:57 AM
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Yeah, that's it exactly!
So it becomes the "Planet Of The Apes" senario?
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:58 AM
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Yeah, that's it exactly!
Ok. I still find that strange.
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Old 04-18-2008, 10:59 AM
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Yes, the bastards really did it! But seriously, yeah it is. If you left for a star 40,000 light years away a round trip would be 80,000 years but only a fraction of that time would have passed for you so earth would more than likely be alot different than it is today!
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Old 04-18-2008, 11:02 AM
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Yes, the bastards really did it! But seriously, yeah it is. If you left for a star 40,000 light years away a round trip would be 80,000 years but only a fraction of that time would have passed for you so earth would more than likely be alot different than it is today!
So theoretically, becasue of the trip, the whole concept of the 1968 Planet of the Apes (as far as time goes) could happen?

The astronauts would be on some sort of....Star Trek...
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Old 04-18-2008, 11:02 AM
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Ok. I still find that strange.
Yeah, it's bazar. They've tested time dilation with subatomic particles. There's a particle called a pion, it decays very quickly, scientists have measured the decay rate at rest in a laboratory and also measured the decay rate of pion coming at us from the sun, which are traveling near the speed of light and the decay rate is much slower. It's about the only way they can test it cause time dilation doesn't become that evident until moving at speeds near light speed.
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