Sunday, January 30, 2011

Mastering Physics: The Empire Strikes Back

(a=nb in the figure ).
Part A
How fast, relative to an observer, does an Empire ship have to travel for its markings to be confused with those of a Federation ship? Use c for the speed of light in a vacuum.

The starships of the Solar Federation are marked with the symbol of the Federation, a circle, whereas starships of the Denebian Empire are marked with the Empire's symbol, an ellipse whose major axis is n times its minor axis

Express your answer in terms of n and c.



  1. Yeah I couldn't follow the Hints either.. how do you reach that answer? :^)

  2. b = nb sqrt(1-u^2 / c^2)
    1 = n sqrt(1-u^2 / c^2)
    1/n = sqrt(1-u^2 / c^2)
    1/n^2 = 1-u^2 / c^2
    u^2 / c^2 = 1 - 1/n^2
    u/c = sqrt(1 - 1/n^2)
    u = c*sqrt(1 - 1/n^2)