3
votes
0answers
41 views

Rigid rectangle in Schwarzschild

Say I build a perfect rectangle. Side lengths $l_1$ and $l_2$ and perfect right angles. I am on earth and the metric is given by the Schwarzschild metric. Setting $dt=0$ leads to the spatial ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Metric for infinite straight cosmic string

A string theory question on my general relativity problem set: Metric is given as $$\mathrm{d}s^2 = -A(r)\mathrm{d}t^2 + B(r)\mathrm{d}r^2 + r^2 \mathrm{d}\theta^2.$$ a) Solve the vacuum equations ...
4
votes
3answers
89 views

Aside from experimental evidence, is there any reason to model space as Euclidean?

Obviously experiment is the end-all-be-all of any science, but I'm curious if there's any a priori reason to model space as Euclidean three-space (from a pre-relativity viewpoint, of course; I'm ...
2
votes
2answers
106 views

Frames, Tetrads and GR

Given a general metric, $g_{ab}$ I can select an orthonormal basis $\omega^{a}$ such that, $$g_{ab} = \eta_{ab}\omega^a \otimes \omega^b$$ where $\eta_{ab}$ = $\mathrm{diag}(1,-1,-1,-1).$ We may ...
3
votes
0answers
59 views

Computing the Einstein tensor for a spherically symmetrical metric using the tetrad formalism

I am having some trouble understanding how to use the tetrad formalism. I will start with what I have so far, my question will be after that. I begin with the metric $$ \text{d}s^2 = e^{2a} \text{ ...
1
vote
0answers
31 views

Physical applications of the mathematical curvature

I was studying multivariable calculus last semester and had one of the topics talking about a curvature, but we had no applications on it. So how does it help in physics? E.g. curvature of curve: ...
1
vote
2answers
44 views

Killing vector contractions along isometric curves

Imagine $\xi_{\nu}$ is a Killing vector field on a manifold. Does $\xi_{\nu}\xi^{\nu}$ remain constant along any isometric curve defined by the Killing vector field? My guess is that yes since as ...
51
votes
4answers
5k views

Why would spacetime curvature cause gravity?

It is fine to say that for an object flying past a massive object, the spacetime is curved by the massive object, and so the object flying past follows the curved path of the geodesic, so it "appears" ...
4
votes
1answer
109 views

Computing Curvature via Cartan Formalism

Given a metric $g_{\mu \nu}$, one can select an orthonormal basis $\omega^{\hat{a}}$ such that, $$ds^2= \omega^{\hat{t}}\otimes\omega^{\hat{t}} - \omega^{\hat{x}} \otimes \omega^{\hat{x}} - ...$$ By ...
8
votes
2answers
912 views

Does space curvature automatically imply extra dimensions?

Total newbie with basically no physics knowledge here :) I would welcome any correction to the steps of my reasoning that lead to my question, which could easily turn out to be invalid :) My current ...
0
votes
0answers
80 views

Curvature based derivation of Schwarzchild Metric

I'm a third year maths undergrad and I'm trying to find (and follow) a curvature based derivation of the Schwarzchild metric, if there exists such a proof?
2
votes
6answers
252 views

Curvature of Spacetime

I have been exploring for some time both the Special and General Relativity, hoping to glean at least a conceptual grasp of their basic tenets. In reading the book "Gravitation" by Misner, Thorne and ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

Riemann normal chart and special relativity

When you pick Riemann normal coordinates at a point, then the Christoffel symbols vanish and the metric is flat, but the Riemann curvature tensor does not necessarily vanish. Since Einstein said that ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

Finding the components of the Riemannian tensor given the components of a metric

I am looking at a manifold of dimension $n$ (And I am considering a local co-ordinates system $x_1,x_2,\ldots x_n$) and the metric defined by the components $g_{ij} = \frac{\delta_{ij}}{x_1^2}$. I'm ...
6
votes
2answers
238 views

What is the geometrical interpretation of Ricci tensor?

In differential geometry and general relativity space is said to be flat if the Riemann tensor $R=0$. If the Ricci tensor on manifold $M$ is zero, it doesn't mean that the manifold itself is flat. So ...
2
votes
1answer
105 views

How to prove that zero Weyl tensor predicts no deflection of light?

There is Nordstrom theory, which can be given as $$ C_{\mu \nu \alpha \beta} = 0. $$ The solution of Einstein equations for this case is conformally flat metric: $$ g^{\mu \nu} = e^{\epsilon \varphi ...
1
vote
1answer
111 views

Riemann curvature tensor symmetries confusion

In the context of spacetime, reading Schutz, I'm confused about the symmetries of the Riemann curvature tensor, which I understand are: ...
3
votes
1answer
345 views

Lie derivative of Riemann tensor along killing vector ( = 0 )

I'm currently learning the mathematical framework for General Relativity, and I'm trying to prove that the Lie derivative of the Riemann curvature tensor is zero along a killing vector. With the ...
5
votes
2answers
141 views

Exterior (covariant) derivatives and electromagnetism

I'm porting Maxwell's equations to curved spacetime and am having trouble reconciling the tensor and forms treatments. I think the problem boils down to a misunderstanding on my part concerning the ...
3
votes
3answers
167 views

In the static spacetime, the extrinsic curvature of hypersurface $t=constant$ is zero

How can I prove that in the static spacetime, the extrinsic curvature of hypersurface $t=constant$ is zero? My efforts all are failed. Any hint would be greatly appreciated.
2
votes
1answer
150 views

The Weyl tensor and gravitational waves

How exactly is the Weyl tensor is connected with information about gravitational waves? And what are physical reasons for that?
4
votes
0answers
258 views

How to prove that Weyl tensor is invariant under conformal transformations?

I need to verify that the solution for vanishing Weyl tensor is conformally flat metric $g_{\mu\nu} = e^{2\varphi}\eta_{\mu\nu}$. The most convenient way to show this is to prove that Weyl tensor is ...
4
votes
6answers
395 views

Physical meaning of non-trivial solutions of vacuum Einstein's field equations

According to Einstein, the space-time is curved and the origin of the curvature is the presence of matter i.e. the presence of the energy-momentum tensor $T_{ab}$ in Einstein's field equations. If our ...
3
votes
0answers
104 views

Gauss-Bonnet term in Physics

Given a 4-dimensional compact manifold (torsion free), the Euler characteristic is defined as: $$E_4 ~=~ \int \epsilon_{abcd}R^{ab} \wedge R^{cd}$$ with $R^{ab}$ is the curvature 2-form. Perturb the ...
3
votes
1answer
110 views

What spacetimes satisfy this identity?

What spacetimes satisfy $R^{\mu\nu} R_{\mu\nu} =\alpha R^2$, where $R = g^{\mu\nu}R_{\mu\nu}$ is the Ricci scalar, and $\alpha$ is some constant? A follow-up question: in what spacetimes does ...
4
votes
2answers
456 views

What's the idea behind the Riemann curvature tensor?

The Riemann curvature tensor can be expressed using the Christoffel symbols like this: $R^m{}_{jkl} = \partial_k\Gamma^m{}_{lj} - \partial_l\Gamma^m{}_{kj} + \Gamma^m{}_{ki}\Gamma^i{}_{lj} ...
2
votes
1answer
780 views

Riemann tensor in 2d and 3d

Ok so I seem to be missing something here. I know that the number of independent coefficients of the Riemann tensor is $\frac{1}{12} n^2 (n^2-1)$, which means in 2d it's 1 (i.e. Riemann tensor given ...
1
vote
1answer
186 views

Weyl & Riemann curvature tensors and gravitational “physical” quantities in Einstein vacuum equations

If we look at the Einstein vacuum equations, that is without matter (there is the possibility or curvature without matter), for instance we may consider gravitational waves. The question is: Is there ...
0
votes
2answers
60 views

Expand metric $g_{ij}$ about flat space

I expand metric $g_{ij}$ about flat space $\delta_{ij}$ $$g_{ij}=\delta_{ij}+h_{ij}$$ where $|h_{ij}|\ll 1$. I would like to find $R_{ij}$, to linear order, in terms of $h_{ij}$, but I dont know ...
-1
votes
1answer
195 views

Metric tensor in General Relativity or otherwise [closed]

What is the metric tensor? How can this be a covariant and contravariant tensor, or a mixed tensor, by raising and lowering indices? How it relates to distance function (metric) and angles? How ...
2
votes
1answer
203 views

Hodge star operator on curvature?

I've a question regarding the Hodge star operator. I'm completely new to the notion of exterior derivatives and wedge products. I had to teach it to myself over the past couple of days, so I hope my ...
3
votes
1answer
162 views

Deriving the transformation under Weyl rescaling in Polchinski eq. (1.2.31)

I have another question in Polchinski's string theory book volume 1, namely how to derive Eq. (1.2.32)? $$(-\gamma')^{1/2} R'=(-\gamma)^{1/2} (R-2 \nabla^2 \omega) \tag{1.2.32}$$ I have awared his ...
1
vote
2answers
185 views

Triple-right triangle experiment: what's the minimum distance?

Among the other ways, one way to prove the Earth is round is the triple-right triangle. The idea is simple: Starting from point A you move in a straight line for a certain distance. At point B, ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

How can I express the Riemann tensor of the 4-metric in terms of quantities derived from the 3-metric and the normal to it?

I want an expression for the Riemann tensor of the four metric in terms of extrinsic curvature, normal, lie derivative of the normal, etc. The first Einstein-Codacci eq. gives the Riemann tensor of ...
1
vote
1answer
178 views

Curvature tensor of 2-sphere using exterior differential forms (tetrads)

$ds^2= r^2 (d\theta^2 + \sin^2{\theta}d\phi^2)$ The following is the tetrad basis $e^{\theta}=r d{\theta} \,\,\,\,\,\,\,\,\,\, e^{\phi}=r \sin{\theta} d{\phi}$ Hence, $de^{\theta}=0 ...
3
votes
1answer
453 views

Problem with calculating the curvature tensor of the $n$ dimensional sphere

I am calculating the Riemann curvature tensor, Ricci curvature tensor, and Ricci scalar of the $n$ sphere $$x_0^2 + x_1^2 + ....+x_n^2=R^2,$$ whose metric is $$ds^2=R^2(d\phi_1^2 + \sin{\phi_1}^2 ...
3
votes
0answers
111 views

Curvature and spacetime

Suppose that it is given that the Riemann curvature tensor in a special kind of spacetime of dimension $d\geq2$ can be written as $$R_{abcd}=k(x^a)(g_{ac}g_{bd}-g_{ad}g_{bc})$$ where $x^a$ is a ...
2
votes
1answer
208 views

Parallel transport of a vector along a closed curve in curvilinear coordinates

There is an expression indicating the change of the vector parallel translation along a closed infinitesimal curve in curvilinear coordinates (one way of introducing curvature tensor): $$ \Delta A_{k} ...
2
votes
2answers
332 views

Ricci tensor for a 3-sphere without Math packets

Let's have the metric for a 3-sphere: $$ dl^{2} = R^{2}\left(d\psi ^{2} + sin^{2}(\psi )(d \theta ^{2} + sin^{2}(\theta ) d \varphi^{2})\right). $$ I tried to calculate Riemann or Ricci tensor's ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

Curved space to flat space calculation

When changing the curved space co-ordinate into a flat space co-ordinate if a cone. I got the result transformation that i cannot get a transformation at the vertex(apex) why?
0
votes
1answer
42 views

What is the Willmore energy of the Earth (or the geoid)?

Wikipedia defines the Willmore energy as: $$e[{\mathcal{M}}]=\frac{1}{2} \int_{\mathcal{M}} H^2\, \mathrm{d}A,$$ where $H$ stands for the mean curvature of the manifold $\mathcal{M}$. What is the ...
1
vote
2answers
293 views

What is the Riemann curvature tensor contracted with the metric tensor?

Can the Ricci curvature tensor be obtained by a 'double contraction' of the Riemann curvature tensor? For example $R_{\mu\nu}=g^{\sigma\rho}R_{\sigma\mu\rho\nu}$.
2
votes
1answer
307 views

Difference between $\partial$ and $\nabla$ in general relativity

I read a lot in Road to Reality, so I think I might use some general relativity terms where I should only special ones. In our lectures we just had $\partial_\mu$ which would have the plain partial ...
3
votes
1answer
496 views

What bends fabric of space-time?

I know that mass can bend fabric of space-time, which causes gravity by making an object curve around a planet or star but is there anything else that can bend it? Other energy sources, forces ...
1
vote
1answer
92 views

Is there a formula to work out how much the fabric of spacetime bends?

From my knowledge, a big mass (planet star etc) can bend the fabric of spacetime. Is there a formula that we can use to work out how much it bends?
1
vote
1answer
120 views

What is the curvature scalar $\Psi_{4}$?

What is the curvature scalar $\Psi_{4}$? Is it related to the scalar curvature $R$? What does its real and imaginary parts represent?
2
votes
0answers
431 views

de Sitter and anti de Sitter metric

Is the following correct for the distance $d$ from the origin $(0,0)$ to point $(t,x)$ in the 2-dimensional de-Sitter and anti de-Sitter spaces? Here, $t$ is time and the distance may be called the ...
6
votes
1answer
857 views

What is the stress energy tensor?

I'm trying to understand the Einstein Field equation equipped only with training in Riemannian geometry. My question is very simple although I cant extract the answer from the wikipedia page: Is the ...
4
votes
2answers
533 views

Where do I start with Non-Euclidean Geometry?

I've been trying to grok General Relativity for a while now, and I've been having some trouble. Many physics textbooks gloss over the subject with an "it's too advanced for this medium", and many ...
18
votes
6answers
5k views

Laplace operator's interpretation

What is your interpretation of Laplace operator? When evaluating Laplacian of some scalar field at a given point one can get a value. What does this value tell us about the field or it's behaviour in ...