The Pole-Barn Paradox Resolved

Last evening, I suddenly realised that I hadn’t yet written down the solution to the pole-barn paradox that I wrote about a while ago. Gawd, it’s been more than a month! Just to put the problem in perspective, let me refresh our memories with this image. Like most other paradoxes of relativity, this one too stems from the fact that simultaneity has no meaning at speeds relativistic enough. Now what do I mean by that? As Lorentz’s transformation goes, theta being the rapidity, the primed and the unprimed coordinates representing those in the rocket frame and laboratory frame respectively. So...…

Treat for the eyes (and the brain!)

It’s been a really long time since the last post; well, in all fairness, I’ve been busy with my ITSP - an autonomous foosball foosball table. It sounds really impressive, but our team could not accomplish much. We were only able to get our goalie running. Anyways, I’ve been studying some numerical techniques to solve differential equations in the meantime. There’s this nice course on Coursera on Scientific Computing (they’ve removed it recently after they shifted to the new platform), which gives an introduction to the basics of the numerical/computational approach to various problems. The course especially includes the numerical...…

Resonance Detection

Our next module for our summer research project under Prof Nandi is now complete. We generated pseudo-data for two body decay processes and processed it in another independent code, which looked for resonance in the available set of data. This is a very common method for looking for particles in the humongous heap of data that the LHC produces, though we’re doing it at a much smaller scale, obviously (duh). Going into the details, what we basically did was take pairs of Kaons, and , from the available data set (generated by a separate code running Monte-Carlo simulations that we...…

Two Body Decay

It’s a great feeling when you finally get to compile your code. Now that we have successfully run the first set of Monte Carlo simulations of a two body decay, we’re going to move on to more complex problems. Oh, by the way, this is for my Summer Undergraduate Research Project under Prof B K Nandi, which I’m doing in collaboration with Mandar and Sagar. Anyways, it might seem pretty noob-like, but looking at the graphs we generated gives major feels. We studied the decay of the meson into and mesons. If you want to look at the code we...…

The Pole-Barn Paradox

I came across this really interesting, and famous, paradox the other day while reading Wheeler’s Spacetime Physics; it’s called the pole-barn paradox. What it basically says is this: You have a 20 metre long (true length) pole in your hand, running into a 10 metre long (true length) barn, at such a speed that your friend standing just outside the barn sees the pole contracted to 10 metres. So it seems to him that you, along with the pole, can be entirely contained within the barn. But, to you, the barn seems contracted to 5 metres, and so, there would...…

The Year That Was

This is the link to a review I wrote for the Electronics Club of IIT Bombay for my freshman year. Would like to know your feedback, so fire away in the comments section. Signing off, like they say at Elec Club, swag amplified! ;) …