Albert Einstein - Chapter 5 Summary & Analysis

Elma Ehrlich Levinger
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Chapter 5 Summary

The narrator takes the reader back to 1887 in the United States. Michelson, an experimental physicist, and Morley, a chemist, were trying to measure how fast the earth travels through space. This was different from the speed the earth revolves around the sun, which was well known. They began with the premise, that the earth moves through space. They repeatedly measured the speed of light through two pipes placed perpendicular to each other (creating conditions analogous to swimmers of equal speed, one moving upstream and the other down). Their measurements were the same within milliseconds: light traveled at the same speed through both pipes. Michelson and Morley published their results, interpreting their observed results as a failure.

Einstein's 1905 papers recasts these results. He theorized that light travels at the same speed and that Michelson's and Morley's measurements, nearly 20 years earlier, had, although misinterpreted, been accurate. Einstein further theorizes...

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This section contains 664 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Albert Einstein Study Guide
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