A No-Math Look at the Rights & Wrongs of Special Relativity
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In 1972 a study was reported which confirms the fundamentals of Special Relativity theory but modifies its meaning. But this modification was lost because the study authors misconstrued Einstein's motion definition. This essay explains, with no math nor complicated physics, how this occurred and how this revolutionary study alters the exact meaning of Einstein's great theory. More
Einstein 's Special Relativity theory is one of the great achievements of Twentieth century science. It concerns some physical effects of movement. Though these effects are counterintuitive, evidence shows they occur. But nothing in the theory itself says who will experience these effects. That requires a separate judgment on the part of whomever uses the theory's equations. To provide this, Einstein suggested a law. Though it is separate and unrelated to the theory's mathematical derivation, the law is considered to be part of the theory. Unfortunately, it involves a flagrant logical contradiction which nobody denies but nobody can resolve. Critics say this disproves Einstein's law. But physicists believe the contradiction is not a disproof because, though the law is conspicuously absurd, it works (and it does). Thus we have the amazing circumstance that physics, the most rigorously logical of all the sciences, includes a conspicuously illogical law.
In 1972 two researchers reported revolutionary new and unexpected evidence which contradicts Einstein's law. But though their data prove the law is in error, these researchers say their analysis supports it! They base this astounding conclusion on the claim that in developing Special Relativity Einstein said exactly the opposite of what he is famous for saying. Physics is extensively mathematical, and to understand most issues concerning it one must be mathematically knowledgeable. But this issue requires no such ability. It is simply a question of whether or not Einstein said what these researchers claim. Any high school student, indeed many kindergarten children can judge it. This essay presents quotes from both Einstein and these researchers showing he did not say what they allege. Therefore, these researcher's startling new evidence must be accepted as empirical disproof of Einstein's suggested law. In no way whatsoever does this disproof extend to Special Relativity itself. Indeed, this research confirms the fundamental validity of the theory. But its evidence proves that the theory does not mean exactly what physicists have long assumed it does.
In plain and uncomplicated language, with not a bit of math, this essay explains Special Relativity, Einstein's empirically disproved law, the research project and its revolutionary law disproving evidence. In the same straightforward language it also explains the coincidence which enables this erroneous law to work.
If sufficient non-physicists learn the true meaning of this revolutionary research, sooner or later this knowledge should seep through to physicists. Hopefully, this will lead them to pull their heads out of the sand and address this issue, modifying Special Relativity as the evidence from this 1972 research requires.