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Doppler Effect

Keywords: Reference Frames, Special Relativity, Doppler Effect, Small Group Activity

Highlights of the activity

  1. This small group activity is designed to help upper division undergraduate students understand the Doppler effect using hyperbolic geometry.
  2. Students work in small groups and use spacetime diagrams and the geometry of hyperbolas to explore the Doppler effect.
  3. The entire class wrap-up discussion focuses on how to interpret the Doppler effect using hyperbolic trigonometry, giving students further insight into the geometry of special relativity.

Reasons to spend class time on the activity

  • good final application of hyperbolic triangle trig
  • demonstrates important consequence of special relativity


Instructor's Guide

Authors: Tevian Dray
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