14 Mar Einstein’s Anniversary
PI number day
If the sun suddenly dimmed, on Earth it would take us 8 minutes to perceive it, as we stop receiving its light. But what if it disappeared instantly?
According to scientific precepts until the publication of the General Theory of Relativity in 1915, the gravitational force was understood as a force ‘instantaneous at a distance’, which would mean that, when the Sun disappears, we immediately stop perceiving its gravitational attraction force.
However, the Theory of Relativity established a new paradigm, in which this force is transmitted as a deformation of space-time by gravitational fields, whose propagation speed is the same as that of light and, therefore, we would not notice the force of attraction of the sun instantly, but at 8 minutes from the instant of its disappearance.
We hope we never have to experience it live; To learn more about this subject, you can read “A Gravitational Universe”, written and illustrated by the Spanish journalists Mónica G. Salomone and Ángel Gómez Roldán.
Coincidentally, the day of Einstein’s anniversary is the day on which PI Number Day (the famous 3.141592…) is celebrated since its celebration was approved in the United States House of Representatives in 2009. But this day was not chosen for Einstein’s anniversary, we have already said that it is a coincidence. So why was this day chosen for its celebration?
Hint: how is the date March 14 represented numerically in English?