The path to Special Relativity

Gideon Koekoek, Urs Wyder, Jan Willem van Holten

Research output: Working paper / PreprintWorking paper


We present a derivation of the transformation rules between inertial systems making no other assumptions than the existence of the latter, and show that generically these rules are characterized by a constant of nature with the dimensions of an inverse velocity squared having the same value in all inertial frames. No independent postulate of the existence of an absolute velocity for light waves or other carriers of physical information is necessary. Aside from the usual Lorentz- and galilean transformations, our analysis also allows for the existence of four-dimensional Euclidian transformation rules between inertial systems.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 22 Sept 2021


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