Question

A ladder leans against a wall inside a spaceship. From the point of view of a person on the ship, the base of the ladder is 2.40 m from the wall, and the top of the ladder is 6.26 m above the floor. The spaceship moves past the Earth with a speed of 0.86c in a direction parallel to the floor of the ship. Find the angle the ladder makes with the floor, as seen by an observer on Earth.

Answer #1

We know that the length along the direction of relative motion is contracted. Since the spaceship moves past the earth in a direction parallel to the floor of the ship the length parallel to the floor is contracted. The length perpendicular to the direction of relative motion does not change.

The angle that the ladder makes with the floor Earth frame as seen by an observer on earth is

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