Chapter 3. Concepts of Special Relativity

  1. Prof. Dr. Markus Reiher and
  2. Dr. Alexander Wolf

Published Online: 22 JUN 2009

DOI: 10.1002/9783527627486.ch3

Relativistic Quantum Chemistry: The Fundamental Theory of Molecular Science

Relativistic Quantum Chemistry: The Fundamental Theory of Molecular Science

How to Cite

Reiher, M. and Wolf, A. (2009) Concepts of Special Relativity, in Relativistic Quantum Chemistry: The Fundamental Theory of Molecular Science, Wiley-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim, Germany. doi: 10.1002/9783527627486.ch3

Author Information

  1. ETH Zuerich, Laboratory for Physical Chemistry, Hoenggerberg Campus, Wolfgang-Pauli-Strasse 10, 8093 Zuerich, Switzerland

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 22 JUN 2009
  2. Published Print: 14 JAN 2009

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9783527312924

Online ISBN: 9783527627486

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Keywords:

  • concepts of special relativity;
  • Einstein's relativity principle;
  • Lorentz transformations;
  • kinematical effects;
  • special relativity;
  • relativistic dynamics;
  • covariant electrodynamics;
  • moving charged particles

Summary

Einstein's theory of special relativity relying on a modified principle of relativity is presented and the Lorentz transformations are identified as the natural coordinate transformations of physics. This necessarily leads to a modification of our perception of space and time and to the concept of a four-dimensional unified space–time. Its basic kinematical and dynamical implications on classical mechanics are discussed. Maxwell's gauge theory of electrodynamics is presented in its natural covariant 4-vector form.