Logical Flaws in E=mc²

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E=mc² is an eye-catching formula that has been heavily promoted in popular culture, such as by the classic television series the Twilight Zone. The primary effect of the formula appears to be to lead students away from the Bible, which implicitly rejects a unified theory for mass and light. Indeed, despite a century of searching, physicists themselves have completely failed at developing a coherent unified theory for both mass and light as implied by the formula.

The formula E=mc² has several logical flaws. Here is the growing list:

  • the speed of light is probably changing over time. But according to the formula, a mass at constant energy would change precisely in inverse proportion squared of any change in the speed of light!
  • how is "m" defined? The formula is unclear about that.
  • the formula falsely implies that it is impossible for matter to increase its energy without increasing its mass in direct proportion.
  • if the formula were true, then why hasn't the formula led to anything of value?
  • the formula implies existence of a unified theory of mass and light, when no such theory is possible.

For a rebuttal to these arguments, see Essay:Rebuttal to Logical Flaws in E=mc².


From "Ask a Mathematician / Ask a Physicist":[1]

This famous equation is a little more subtle than it appears. It does provide a relationship between energy and matter, but importantly it does not say that they’re equivalent.

See also


  1. http://www.askamathematician.com/2014/04/q-what-does-emc2-mean/