Physics & Astronomy Seminar: Spacetime Trigonometry: A Unified Approach to Understanding Relativity
Rob Salgado, Visiting Assistant Professor of Physics, will speak. Einstein’s Relativity (1905 and 1915) revolutionized our notions of space and of time, and it correctly predicted effects not attainable by Galilean and Newtonian physics (which worked quite well in many aspects of our everyday lives). Understanding relativity can be challenging because it seems that we have to abandon our everyday intuition about space and time. It turns out that we don’t have to completely abandon our intuition but to refine it with the help of a geometric analogy. There is a way of understanding relativity using the “Geometry of Spacetime” (an analogy to Euclidean geometry that was first developed by Minkowski in 1908, and initially resisted by Einstein). Unfortunately, many introductions to relativity regard such “geometry” as too advanced. In this talk, I present a natural extension of Minkowski’s analogy that I call “Spacetime Trigonometry”.
Tuesday, March 26, 2019 at 11:30am to 12:30pm