Got a brain-bending question about how the world works — but no experiment to do or equipment to use that can answer it?


The world's great scientists know that creativity is key when it comes to scientific thinking. Some of the most famous theories have popped out of thought experiments — fantastic ways to wonder what the world would be like if things were different.

What do you need to perform a thought experiment? Not a laboratory, not tons of machinery, not a degree in rocket science — only your imagination!

To be a thought experimenter, here's what to do:


Albert Einstein was a master at thought experiments. Once, when someone asked Einstein where his laboratory was, he pointed to his pen!

Take your scientific creativity for a spin with these thought experiments:

Image Credits:

Photos: satellite: courtesy of NASA; Illustrations: Newton's Ball and Light Speed: Eric Hamilton