Relativity and Cosmology


Error in Michelson and Morley Experiment

Authors: Eric Su

Michelson and Morley carried out an experiment in 1887 to determine if the theory of ether is correct. The experiment shows that the speed of light is constant in all directions. However, an error in this experiment was introduced by the calculation of the elapsed time for light to travel between two moving mirrors in the rest frame of ether. Both Michelson and Morley assumed that the speed of light is not altered upon reflection by a moving mirror. This critical error produced a small variation in the distance traveled by the light between mirrors in the rest frame of ether. As a result, Lorentz transformation was proposed to explain the concept of length contraction.

Comments: 3 Pages. All comments are welcome. Please include your email address and a short list of your publications.

Download: PDF

Submission history

[v1] 2019-02-16 14:08:54
[v2] 2019-05-06 17:40:35

Unique-IP document downloads: 123 times is a pre-print repository rather than a journal. Articles hosted may not yet have been verified by peer-review and should be treated as preliminary. In particular, anything that appears to include financial or legal advice or proposed medical treatments should be treated with due caution. will not be responsible for any consequences of actions that result from any form of use of any documents on this website.

Add your own feedback and questions here:
You are equally welcome to be positive or negative about any paper but please be polite. If you are being critical you must mention at least one specific error, otherwise your comment will be deleted as unhelpful.

comments powered by Disqus