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Is it possible for an object to be put into absolute dead stop?

Is it possible for an object to be put into absolute dead stop, i.e. no motion at all, relative to every other object in the universe? Is this the opposite end of the speed spectrum to the speed of light? If so would the object become infinitely light, and therefore invisible?
Graham Hardy from West Yorkshire (Aged 45-54)


2 Responses

  1. The biggest problem with this is to be able to stop something you need to have a stationary reference point. For example, if I was on a plane, I may be stationary relative to the rest of the plane, but not relative to the ground. The ground itself is also moving as Earth spins and orbits the Sun. However, the Sun is also steadily orbiting the Galactic centre, and our galaxy is moving rapidly away from all the other galaxies as the universe expands.

    If everything is moving away from everything else then where is the stationary point?

    Sorry to answer your question with another question, but I’m afraid it’s not possible to accurately answer.

    Additionally, if we were able to somehow make an object stationary then it’s observable mass would be it’s rest mass – this is the mass that would be observable by someone moving in perfect synch with the object (i.e. with zero velocity relative to the object). Any increase in mass as it approaches the speed of light is added onto this rest mass.

    Lastly, theoretically, even if an object’s mass were reduced somehow, it would presumably interact with light rays in the same manner, reflecting, absorbing or transmitting them, meaning that it would remain visible.

    Hope this helps.

  2. “If everything is moving away from everything else then where is the stationary point?” OK. So if we can determine the direction of travel of three galaxies, work out the angles that they are traveling along, then plot the lines of direction back, could we find the position of the big bang, ie the position from which everything is expanding – and use this as the reference point to establish dead stop?

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