Length Contraction

The special theory of relativity not only suggested that time is relative with respect to inertial reference frames but that length and distance are also in fact relative quantities that differ in different reference frames. Suppose we have two observers, one of whom is stationary on Earth while the second observer climbs into a spaceship and travels away with a very high velocity. To the observer on Earth, the spaceship will seem to shorten in length and the distance the spaceship travels will also seem to shorten. That is, the length of an object moving relative to an observer is measured to be less along its direction of motion than when it is at rest.

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