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What is probably being misunderstood by a person who says, “But that’s only a scientific theory?”

Please answer all the questions given below.  Make sure to edit short-answer responses for grammar and syntax errors.  Total: 100 points

1) What is probably being misunderstood by a person who says, “But that’s only a scientific theory?” (At least 100 words, 10 points) 


2) Please click on the link below to access the report I’d like you to review before answering this question:

As the report shows, a third of Americans reject climate science data.  Do some research to find TWO reasons for this rejection. Please make sure to use only peer-reviewed sources and cite them MLA style.  (At least 250 words, 25 points) 


3) Suppose you drop a care package from an airplane traveling at constant velocity, and further suppose that air resistance doesn’t affect the falling package. (10 points, at least 150 words. Feel free to illustrate with a diagram) 

  1. a) What will be its falling path as observed by someone at rest on the ground, not directly below but off to the side where there’s a clear view? Explain
  2. b) What will be the falling path as observed by you looking downward from the airplane? Explain


4) Contrast Newton’s understanding of space, time, and mass with Einstein’s understanding as explained by the Special Theory of Relativity? 

(150 to 250 words, 10 points) 


5) Relativity equations for time, length, and momentum hold true for ( 2 pts)

(a) everyday low speeds.

(b) relativistic speeds.

(c) Both of these.

(d) Neither of these.


6)  To say that E = mc (squared) is to say that energy ( 2 pts)

(a) increases as the speed of light squared.

(b) is twice as great as the speed of light.

(c) and mass are equivalent.

(d) equals mass traveling at the speed of light squared.


7) According to the correspondence principle, ( 2 pts)

(a) new theory must agree with old theory where they overlap.

(b) Newton’s mechanics is as valid as Einstein’s mechanics.

(c) relativity equations apply to high speeds while Newton’s equations apply to low speeds.

(d) special relativity and general relativity are two sides of the same coin.


8) Things that are equivalent according to the equivalence principle are ( 2 pts)

(a) space and time.

(b) a traveling twin and a stay-at-home twin.

(c) gravity and acceleration.

(d) mass and energy.


9) According to general relativity, ( 2 pts)

(a) mass distorts spacetime.

(b) gravity affects clocks.

(c) light can’t escape from a black hole.

(d) All of these


10) As a blinking light source approaching you gains speed, you see the frequency of flashes ( 2 pts)

(a) increase.

(b) decrease.

(c) remain unchanged.

(d) None of these.


11) If you were to travel at a speed close to the speed of light, you could notice that your own ( 2 pts)

(a) mass changes.

(b) pulse decreases.

(c) Both of these.

(d) Neither of these.


12) Clocks on a fast-moving spaceship whizzing past Earth appear to run slow when viewed from ( 2 pts)

(a) inside the spaceship.

(b) Earth.

(c) Both of these.

  1. d) Neither of these.


13) Suppose that you are traveling on board a spacecraft that is moving with respect to the earth at a speed of 0.975c. You are breathing at a rate of 8.0 breaths per minute. As monitored on earth, what is your breathing rate? Use time dilation to calculate the answer and please show your work. 8 points


14) How fast must a meter stick be moving if its length is observed to shrink to half a meter by an observer on earth?  Make sure to show your work (8 points)


15) Consider two apple pies that are identical in every respect, except that pie 1 is piping hot and pie 2 is at room temperature. (13 points)

(a) If identical forces are applied to the two pies, is the acceleration of pie 1 greater than, less than, or equal to the acceleration of pie 2? Explain

(b) Choose the best explanation from among the following:

  1. The acceleration of pie 1 is greater because the fact that it is hot means it has the greater energy.
  2. The fact that pie 1 is hot means it behaves as if it has more mass than pie 2, and therefore it has a smaller acceleration.
  3. The pies have the same acceleration regardless of their temperature because they have identical rest masses

What is probably being misunderstood by a person who says, “But that’s only a scientific theory?”







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