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Special Relativity and How it Works

ISBN: 978-3-527-40607-4
668 pages
July 2008
Special Relativity and How it Works (3527406077) cover image
Based on his successful work "Special Relativity and Motions Faster than Light", Moses Fayngold has written a thorough presentation of the special theory of relativity. The unique feature of the textbook is its two-leveled structure helping students to master the material more effectively: the first level presents a qualitative discussion of a problem, while the second one contains its rigorous treatment. Fayngold points out the connection between fundamental principles and known phenomena. In three new chapters on 'Relativity at Work' (Electromagnetism, Optics, Quantum Mechanics), he not only shows what relativity is, but also how it works. The scope of new material extends to include a chapter on Causality and on Applied Relativity, including astrophysical and accelerator topics. Backed throughout by numerous examples and exercises.
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1 Introduction
2 Light and Relativity
3 The Velocities' Play
4 Space-Time
5 Relativity at Work I: Mechanics
6 Relativity at Work II: Electromagnetism and Optics
7 Relativistic Paradoxes
8 Miracles of a Spinning World
9 The Theory of Relativity is the Theory of Absoluteness
10 Relativity at Work III: Quantum Mechanics
11 Relativity and Causality
12 Applied Relativity and Relativistic Engineering
14 A Bit of General Relativity
Appendices
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Moses Fayngold is Special Lecturer at the Physics Department of the New Jersey Institute of Technology, where he is also involved in the research activities of the Multi-Disciplinary Optical Science and Engineering Program. He has been lecturing for some 20 years on special relativity, both to non-specialized audiences in public planetariums as well as to undergraduate and graduate students.
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Comments on the previous Fayngold book 'Special Relativity and Motions Faster than Light':

"... as serious and accurate, as a scientific publication, and as absorbing and entertaining as a good scientific popularization. Among hundreds books on relativity this one is special." (Prof. Edward Parilis, California Inst. of Technology, Pasadena, USA)

"... supplementary reading material to the standard texts, that expands on the concepts without getting hyper-specialized" (D. Green, The New School University, NY, USA)

"... the physics community will enthusiastically receive this book and [...] it will be widely adopted by physics and engineering teachers as a complementary textbook." (S. Piatek, New Jersey Inst. of Techn., USA)

"Dr. Fayngold knows how to tell a story." (S. Piatek, New Jersey Inst. Of Techn.)

"Dr. Moses Fayngold has written an extremely interesting book on special relativity and what happens in theory when objects travel at speeds faster-than-light. Undergraduates and graduate students will find his vivid detailed examples very helpful in learning relativity and in working out many fascination paradoxes of relativity - including both the familiar "twin paradox" and less-familiar apparant contradictions of relativistic puzzles." (Dr. Stephan Rosen, Director Scientific Career Transitions, NY.)

"To sum up: the book covers all aspects of superluminal phenomena." (Norbert Dragon, General Relativity and Gravitation, vol. 36, 2004)
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