One prediction for the appearance of the starfield from a moving reference frame has been circulated widely despite physically objectionable features. We reexamine the physical basis for this effect. To the well‐known aberation and Doppler effects we add the transformation of intensity of light upon a change of reference frame. We integrate the transformed spectrum of a star, represented as a blackbody, over the response function of the human eye. We present a one‐parameter function to represent the dependence of the apparent visual magnitude of different stars upon Doppler factor. We conclude with a sequence of computer‐generated figures to show the appearance of Earth’s starfield at various velocities. A ’’starbow’’ does not appear.
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Papers| April 01 1979
In search of the ’’starbow’’: The appearance of the starfield from a relativistic spaceship
John M. McKinley;
Am. J. Phys. 47, 309–316 (1979)
John M. McKinley, Paul Doherty; In search of the ’’starbow’’: The appearance of the starfield from a relativistic spaceship. Am. J. Phys. 1 April 1979; 47 (4): 309–316. https://doi.org/10.1119/1.11834
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