A set of numbers used to quantify location in space.

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3
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5answers
339 views

Does coordinate time have physical meaning?

I have always been a little confused by the meaning of the "$t$" which appears in spacetime intervals or metrics in general relativity. I concluded that $t$ was just a mathematical thing which allow ...
0
votes
1answer
120 views

Coordinate system for crystallographic groups

In the International Tables for Crystallography for each crystallographic group an asymmetric unit is supplied (mathematicians call this a fundamental domain of the group). This region is a bounded ...
0
votes
0answers
43 views

Transforming matrices using tensor transformations? [migrated]

Let us say I started with the matrix $$ A= \begin{pmatrix} x & -y\\ y & x \\ \end{pmatrix} $$ And I wanted to use the tensor transformation: $$ \bar ...
4
votes
2answers
995 views

Coordinate Transformation of Scalar Fields in QFT

By definition scalar fields are independent of coordinate system, thus I would expect a scalar field $\psi [x]$ would not change under the transformation $x^\mu \to x^\mu + \epsilon^\mu $. Correct? ...
1
vote
0answers
11 views

Coordinate Transformation across different media

I have an arrangement that is as follows : (1) inner cylinder(radius r1) filled with water (2) outer cylinder(concentric, radius r2>r1) made of glass I have a sensor S1 at radius r(r1) at angle beta. ...
2
votes
2answers
6k views

Derive vector gradient in spherical coordinates from first principles

Trying to understand where the $\frac{1}{r sin(\theta)}$ and $1/r$ bits come in the definition of gradient. I've derived the spherical unit vectors but now I don't understand how to transform ...
0
votes
1answer
112 views

Field transformations

I'm reading Maggiore's book "A modern introduction to quantum field theory" and I'm very confused by what he did in chapter 2.6 page 31 eq. (2.80). He basically wants to find the generators of the ...
-1
votes
0answers
14 views

Is the fourth dimension of Minkowski Spacetime viewed as an axis? [duplicate]

In the three axes of space, I can move in a positive or negative fashion, up or down, side to side, etc. Why is this not the same for the axis of time, if it is an axis? If it's not an axis, what is ...
32
votes
5answers
2k views

Why do we need coordinate-free descriptions?

I was reading a book on differential geometry in which it said that a problem early physicists such as Einstein faced was coordinates and they realized that physics does not obey man's coordinate ...
1
vote
1answer
14 views

Euler Angles with respect to base body when Euler Angles with respect to another body is known

Let's say I have a fixed base body $B_0$ with a reference frame $X_0Y_0Z_0$, and two other bodies, $B_1$ and $B_2$, rotated arbitrarily with respect to this base body. Coordinate systems fixed to ...
0
votes
1answer
49 views

Spherical Symmetric Metrics

In the case where all books try to illustrate a spherical metric, the procedure goes this way: First they impose isotropy in terms of polar coordinates so that one can write: $$ds^2=-A(r)dt^2 + ...
4
votes
1answer
539 views

Light-cone coordinates

The light-cone coordinates are defined as $$x^{\pm} ~=~\frac{x^0 \pm x^3}{\sqrt{2}}.$$ Then in the light cone coordinates the position 4-vector becomes: $(x^+, x^-, x^1, x^2)$ . Zwiebach, in his A ...
0
votes
1answer
18 views

E field using cylindrical coordinates

Can someone explain why, when I am going to calculate the $\vec{E}$ or $\vec{B}$ field of a charged ring in its axis (using cylindrical coordinates), the position of source field is $(R,0,0)$ and not ...
2
votes
1answer
73 views

Do Einstein's equations allow multiple solutions that agree in a neighborhood of a spacelike hypersurface?

This question is an extension of my a question that I have recently asked: Why doesn't a global frame of reference exist for GR?, where it was recommended that I post another question (so I am ...
2
votes
2answers
136 views

Why doesn't a global frame of reference exist for GR?

I only have at best a layperson's familiarity with GR, so forgive me if I am asking a basic question, but I have heard that in GR, we cannot have a global frame of reference, that is a frame of ...
1
vote
2answers
57 views

Stationary v/s Static

Blau, in his GR book, says that a stationary and spherically symmetric metric is automatically static. He says this easily follows from the fact that for a stationary metric, and in spherical ...
0
votes
2answers
63 views

Meaning of Proper time

Sorry for a bit of a basic question, but want to clarify things in my head. Is proper time quantified by the amount of physical process that an object, or physical system undergoes, for example the ...
1
vote
0answers
29 views

Change of variables for integral operator

One can write the operator $L=(\sqrt{1-i\partial_x^2}-1)$, as an integral, that is $$(\sqrt{1-i\partial_x^2}-1)B(x,t)=\frac{i}{4\pi^2} \int_{-\infty}^{\infty}(\omega(k_o+\kappa)-\omega(k_o))e^{i ...
2
votes
2answers
97 views

How are FRW metric and Minkowski metric physically different?

According to GR, matrices are coordinate invariant. Does this mean we can transform FRW metric to Minkowski metric with a coordinate transformation like $$dx'=dx\cdot a(t), dy' = dy\cdot a(t), dz' = ...
1
vote
2answers
159 views

Locally flat coordinate and Locally inertial frame

I am having some doubts on myself regarding the above concepts in General Relativity. First, I want to point out how I understand them so far. A male observer follows a timelike worldline ($\gamma$) ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

Test bodies general relativity

I'm studying section 82 of the Landau & Lifshitz Field Theory vol.2 In this page it's written that the relative position of test bodies can't remain unchanged during time. And ok with this. But ...
4
votes
1answer
62 views

Invariant equations of motion under Lorentz transformations

My question regards the statement that an equation of motion may be invariant under a Lorentz transformation I just finished watching the Stanford University special relativity lectures on special ...
0
votes
0answers
42 views

Flat Slicing De Sitter to Static De Sitter

I wonder how one transforms from flat slicing de sitter metric given below $$ds^2=-dt^2+e^{Ht}d\bar r^2$$ where $H$ is Hubble expansion rate as a function of time, to static coordinate, ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Minkowski Metric Signature

When I learned about the Minkowski Space and it's coordinates, it was explained such that the metric turns out to be $$ ds^{2} = -(cdx^{0})^{2} +(dx^{1})^{2} + (dx^{2})^{2} + (dx^{3})^{2} $$ where $ ...
0
votes
2answers
78 views

Are spherical coordinates distances or angles?

I've become confused about spherical coordinates when dealing with electric fields. The way I always understood spherical coordinates is something like the below picture. To define a vector, you give ...
0
votes
2answers
47 views

Best coordinate system for Projectile motion [closed]

What is the best coordinate system for describing the projectile motion? Rectangular coordinate system or n-t(normal and tangential) coordinate system.
5
votes
2answers
226 views

Kerr Metric in Orthogonal form

I've seen the Kerr metric usually presented in the Boyer-Lindquist coordinates where there is a cross term in the $d\phi$ and $dt$ term. I've done a good bit of searching and cannot find any ...
3
votes
1answer
50 views

Manifolds, unit 2-sphere and stereographic projection

I am always passing through this example while reading about manifolds that I don't quite get. It is when describing the unit 2-sphere $S^2$ as an example of a manifold. They say, initially it may ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

How do I compute the galactic cooridinates of the Earth for a given date?

The question is simple enough, but I wasn't able to find any tools online. Does anyone know of one, or a simple formula?
2
votes
3answers
312 views

Is there a quick way of finding the kinetic energy on spherical coordinates?

Assume a particle in 3D euclidean space. Its kinetic energy: $$ T = \frac{1}{2}m\left(\dot x^2 + \dot y^2 + \dot z^2\right) $$ I need to change to spherical coordinates and find its kinetic energy: ...
1
vote
1answer
36 views

Components of acceleration in spherical polar co-ordinate

I wanted to calculate two component of acceleration in polar co-ordinate. Starting from the lagrangian $$L= \frac{1}{2}m( \dot{r} ^{2}+ r^{2} \dot{ \theta } ^{2} ) -V(r, \theta )$$ I ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

commutation relation of angular momentum operator in non cartesian coordinates

The angular momentum operator $J$ in quantum mechanics with the commutation relation \begin{equation*} [J_i,J_j]=i\hbar\epsilon_{ijk}J_k \end{equation*} has the structure of a Lie-algebra. It is ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

What exactly are generalized coordinates and how do they differ from regular coordinates?

I'm trying to learn the basics of Hamiltonian mechanics, which typically distinguishes itself from Newtonian mechanics as being described in terms of "generalized coordinates and momenta". What ...
1
vote
3answers
120 views

How can we define a frame of reference in general relativity?

I have started reading general relativity. (A First Course in General Relativity, Bernard Schutz). I am finding very hard to understand a frame of reference. When I was reading special relativity ...
0
votes
2answers
41 views

How to calculate centre of mass

How do I find the centre of mass with given coordinates? For example if we have four objects with mass $m$ at coordinates of a square $(0,0,0),(0,0,a),(0,a,0),(0,a,a)$ or another example with eight ...
2
votes
1answer
83 views

What is the most general definition of a coordinate system?

What is the most general definition of a coordinate system? Specificly: given a suitably general metric space $(\mathcal S, s)$ consisting of a set $\mathcal S$ of elements (for instance: a set ...
0
votes
2answers
110 views

Timelike curves in Special Relativity

I have a question that probably might sound silly to most of you. We know that a natural Lorentz-invariant parametrization of a timelike curve is provided by: $$\tau$$ the Lorentz-invariant proper ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

How do I calculate the right ascension of the ecliptic at the points where it intersects the horizon?

Given an observer's location on the Earth's surface, and time, how do I calculate the right ascensions of the points along the ecliptic where it intersects the observer's horizon?
0
votes
1answer
61 views

Solving Lagrangian equations of motion for two point-bodies with gravitational interaction

I would like to solve the equations of motion with the Lagrangian function for two point-bodies that interact gravitationally via the potential $$V= {-Gm_1m_2 \over r_{12}} $$ where $$r_{12} = **r_1 ...
3
votes
2answers
76 views

Under what representation do the Christoffel symbols transform?

I often read the statement, that the Christoffel symbols aren't tensors. But then, under which representation do they transform?
3
votes
7answers
503 views

Relation between coordinates and frames of reference

I always get a little uneasy that all the theories I can think of (at least since Newton) are constructed in a way such that they would be true in heaven and on earth ... but we can never go ...
1
vote
2answers
166 views

At what point does force stop translating an object and start purely rotating it? [duplicate]

At what point (or distance) from the axis of rotation, does force applied on a rigid body stop translating and purely rotating the body? Can such a point even exist? Does the body always have to ...
2
votes
5answers
169 views

A reference frame is any coordinate system or just a set of Cartesian axes?

In Physics the idea of a reference frame is one important idea. In many texts I've seem, a reference frame is not defined explicitly, but rather there seems to be one implicit definition that a ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Description of charged sphere with Heaviside function in cylindrical coordinates

I need to describe density of charge of uniformly charged sphere (radius R, total charge Q, position of centre (0,0,0)) with Dirac delta function and Heaviside step function. The hard part is to ...
1
vote
1answer
68 views

What is the function type of the generalized momentum?

Let $$L:{\mathbb R}^n\times {\mathbb R}^n\times {\mathbb R}\to {\mathbb R}$$ denote the Lagrangian (it should be differentiable) of a classical system with $n$ spatial coordinates. In the action ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

Gradient and curl of a field in polar coordinates

How do we determine the gradient and curl of a scalar/vector field in polar coordinates? For instance, if we have the following potential energy function for a force, $$U = ...
1
vote
2answers
128 views

Do rotation matrices rotate about inertial or body angles? [closed]

I have Yaw, pitch, and roll angles in that order (Euler 321) to apply to a body reference frame in cartesian coordinate system. I want to know what the body reference frame vector coordinates are ...
-1
votes
3answers
232 views

Finding the appropriate coordinate transformation given two metrics

Given the two-dimensional metric $$ds^2=-r^2dt^2+dr^2$$ How can I find a coordinate transformation such that this metric reduces to the two-dimensional Minkowski metric? I know that ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

from right ascension and declination to angle from semi-major axis

I am working on a research project and having trouble converting from ascension and declination to angles with respect to the semi-major axis. The target coordinate system has its origin at the ...
2
votes
1answer
159 views

Langevin equations in translational and rotational direction

I want to describe the following system. A bead is connected with a tether. There is a force $\vec{F}_{up}=F_{up}\hat{y}$ that acts on the bead. The tether acts with a force on the bead, this force ...