General Relativity is the pillar of modern physics. Let's try and explain it in a few paragraphs and with the help of Lego Batman.
First, we need to understand Newton's first law of motion. Here it is: an object will stay sat still or keep moving forever at a constant speed, unless a force acts on it.
Batman likes to jump off buildings. When he jumps off buildings he's accelerating to the ground.
But Batman doesn't feel a force when this happens. And he should under Newton's first law of motion. It doesn't make sense.
Einstein (why does no one make a Lego Einstein?!) came up with the solution: gravity is a product of warped space and time.
What is space and time? It's like a blanket on which every astronomical object sits.
And the heavier you are the more you warp space and time.
Duplo Batman is warping space time more than Lego Batman. If they were up in space, it would look something like this:
The Earth does not keep the Moon in orbit by exerting a physical force on it, but because its mass distorts the surrounding space and forces the Moon to move that way.
This means that being at rest in a gravitational field and accelerating are physically identical.
This is General Relativity.
What is Sunday Science?
Hello. I'm the freelance writer who gets tech. I have two degrees in Physics and, during my studies, I became increasingly frustrated with the complicated language used to describe some outstanding scientific principles. Language should aid our understanding - in science, it often feels like a barrier.
So, I want to simplify these science sayings and this blog series "Sunday Science" gives a quick, no-nonsense definition of the complex-sounding scientific terms you often hear, but may not completely understand.
If there's a scientific term or topic you'd like me to tackle in my next post, fire an email to email@example.com or leave a comment below. If you want to sign up to our weekly newsletter, pop your email in the form below - thanks!
Yes, please sign up up to receive the Sunday Science Newsletter!
Hello. I'm the freelance writer who gets tech. So, I blog on three core topics:
Science and Technology
And I explain science with Lego in Sunday Science.
Need help with your blog?