Rigid Reference Frames

Throughout history humanity has been intensely interested in knowing our place in the universe.  Primarily this has involved determining or measuring where we are at a specific time.  As our awareness grew in scope, we wanted to be ever more exact in our reckoning and also to be able to communicate, compare or synchronize our perceptions with others.  This drive has lead to greater sophistication in our measurement devices, namely in better clocks and spatial measuring devices such as precision meter-bars. 

However, for mechanical measuring device there are intrinsic limitations due its construction or its material nature.  One remedy for this is to rely on entities of a less material nature to make our measurements.  Light itself can play such a role.  Recent decades have seen a revolution in precision optical metrology. 

One advantage of optical wave metrology, as we will show, is that light waves provide a means to relate disparate frames of reference, the very essence of special relativity.

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