Use this for questions pertaining to curvature of manifolds. Does not need to be specific to general relativity, but also for curvature of e.g. a [tag:calabi-yau] manifold.

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If gravity is due to curvature, how does gravity work in situations with no curvature?

The strength of the gravitational field falls off as the inverse square of the distance from a spherical source. It only falls off as the inverse of the distance from an extended cylindrical or line ...
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5answers
125 views

Local inertial frame

In general relativity we introduce local inertial frames to be such frames where the laws of special relativity holds. Let $\xi^{\alpha}$ the coordinates in the local inertial frame, so we get ...
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2answers
116 views

How is the Ricci scalar $R=0$ here?

Given the metric in the form: $$ds^2 =-A(r)dt^2 +B(r) dr^2 dr^2 +r^2(d\theta ^2 +\sin^2\theta d\phi^2)$$ Papapetrou in his book said that $R=0$ But when I performed it I didn't get zero. For ...
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2answers
123 views

Falling with same acceleration and meaning of gravity

My question is what does falling with same acceleration has to do with what Einstein concluded concerning the gravity in terms of the curvature?
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1answer
311 views

Higher-Dimensional Metrics in (Hyper)-Spherical Coordinates

I want to compute the components of the Riemann curvature tensor (for a case similar to the Schwarzschild solution) in 4 + 1 dimensions, but I want to use a higher-dimensional analogue of spherical ...
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1answer
35 views

Why do we look at non-flat geometries in Cosmology?

In Cosmology we use the Robertson-Walker-Metric which follows from the cosmological principle & mathematics. This metric leaves three cases for a possible curvature (or geometry) of space (not ...
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2answers
2k views

Radius of curvature and focal length

Is the radius of curvature of a convex or concave lens longer than the focal length of the lens? Does the center or curvature affect the focal point in a lens?
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1answer
3k views

Earth curvature refraction for dummies

I keep being presented with 'earth curvature experiment' videos recently, by flat/concave earth advocates. It seems to be their favorite "evidence" that Earth is not spherical. Debunking this gets ...
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2answers
237 views

How warped spacetime bends trajectories of light and moving objects?

I fail to see why the light follows something like the blue line and not the green line on the attached image. Figure 1 - light bends around warped spacetime Afaik. something similar happens ...
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1answer
92 views

Weyl scalar calculation

I'm trying to compute Weyl scalars, but don't really understand the formulae for them, in the sense I don't understand how to compute them. Let's take ...
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1answer
36 views

Help with the Ricci tensor and Chistoffel Symbols [closed]

I really am confused with certain notations of the Ricci tensor and the Christoffel symbols. I'm looking to evaluate $R_{00}$ from my lecture notes, but I'm a little stuck at one point. The Ricci ...
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3answers
496 views

Clarifying what metric counts as flat space

In (2D) Cartesian coordinates, the Euclidean metric... $$\begin{bmatrix} 1 & 0 \\ 0 & 1 \end{bmatrix}$$ ...is flat space. If the diagonal elements are exchanged for other real numbers ...
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1answer
47 views

Is there inflationary solution in $R^2$ theory in Jordan frame?

In the Starobinsky $R^2$ inflation model, one usually uses a conformal transformation from Jordan frame to Einstein frame in which the action can be written just like Einstein action + scalar field ...
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0answers
32 views

Why is spacetime curved by mass but not charge [duplicate]

According to general relativity theory, the deformation of spacetime is proportional to energy tensor $$T_{\mu\nu}.$$ $$ R_{\mu\nu}-\frac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu}R = 8\pi G T_{\mu\nu}. $$ Does it mean that ...
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43 views

Direction of Gravity [duplicate]

I ran into a pde that has a parameter in it that can be either $+1$ or $-1$. They say the $+1$ case corresponds to gravity pointing upwards, whereas the $-1$ case applies to gravity pointing ...
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4answers
136 views

Which tensor describes curvature in 4D spacetime?

I heard these two statements which don't work together (in my mind): In 4D spacetime the curvature is encoded within the Riemann tensor. He holds all the information about curvature in spacetime. ...
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2answers
556 views

2D space-time curvature [closed]

Actually, why is the space-time curvature considered 2D plane. As 2-D dimensional space-time curve is used to explain why moon revolves around the earth stating because the massive objects wraps the ...
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1answer
1k 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 ...
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0answers
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2answers
977 views

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

As I had showed in a previous answer, among the other ways to prove that the Earth is round, we have the triple-right triangle. The idea is simple: Starting from point A you move in a straight ...
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4answers
6k views

What is the physical meaning of the connection and the curvature tensor?

Regarding general relativity: What is the physical meaning of the Christoffel symbol ($\Gamma^i_{\ jk}$)? What are the (preferably physical) differences between the Riemann curvature tensor ($R^i_{\ ...
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1answer
67 views

What exactly does the Kretschmann scalar implies and how does it work?

From the General Relativity class lectures I understood that this particular invariant, the Kretschmann scalar namely $$R_{\mu\nu\lambda\rho} R^{\mu\nu\lambda\rho}$$ is really important because, ...
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1answer
50 views

See behind the black hole

Why in this video does the 2nd black hole appears to change size and appear larger the farther away it gets? How can you see behind it? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ENd8Sz0AFOk
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1answer
59 views

How can I prove that for a Killing vector $\nabla^a \nabla_a \xi^\mu = -R^b_a \xi^a$? [closed]

I'm taking a course on General Relativity and I'm trying to prove that for a Killing vector field $\xi^\mu$ the following equation holds: $$\nabla^a \nabla_a \xi^\mu = -R^\mu_a \xi^a$$ Where $R_ab$ ...
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0answers
37 views

Proper time and asymptotic flatness

I'm trying to understand the concept of asymptotic flatness in general relativity, and came up with the following question: If the proper time $\tau$ is infinite for a timelike geodesic, does it mean ...
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2answers
67 views

How does bending in space-time caused by mass energy translate into acceleration of object? [duplicate]

Let say we have 2 similar apples separated by a distance apart, just their mass energy alone is sufficient to cause bending in the space-time. I think it is this bending in the space-time that cause ...
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4answers
157 views

What allows us to assume spacetime is flat when no normal matter is present?

Dark matter causes a bend in spacetime. We see this through gravitational lensing. But what allows us to assume spacetime is flat when no normal matter is present? Why can't we say that dark matter ...
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3answers
86 views

Why does the curvature of space decrease during inflation but increase after it?

According to the Friedmann equation, curvature of space will increase with time/expansion of space, but I've also read that during Inflation, the expansion caused the Universe to flatten out. What is ...
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6answers
3k views

Gravitation is not force?

Einstein said that gravity can be looked at as curvature in space- time and not as a force that is acting between bodies. (Actually what Einstein said was that gravity was curvature in space-time and ...
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0answers
33 views

Stress-Energy Tensor of Riemann's Curvature Field

Einstein, in "The Foundation of the General Theory of Relativity," as well as most modern lecturers in the subject, use a pseudo-tensor for the stress-energy of the gravitational field. By ...
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1answer
64 views

Gravity: Why Do things fall to Earth? [duplicate]

If gravity is in reality spacetime geometry why when I drop an object on the surface of the Earth does it fall to the ground? Does spacetime push it?
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5answers
939 views

How does “curved space” explain gravitational attraction? [duplicate]

They say that gravity is technically not a real force and that it's caused by objects traveling a straight path through curved space, and that space becomes curved by mass, giving the illusion of a ...
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5answers
1k views
2
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1answer
97 views

Spacetime curvature effect on chemistry

Do current chemistry / astrophysics / stellar chemistry calculations include the effects of the curvature of spacetime on chemical reactions? For example, the heat transfer from a point closer to the ...
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1answer
73 views

Are all maximally symmetric spacetimes constant curvature spacetimes?

A $d$ dimensional maximally symmetric spacetime is a spacetime with the maximum allowed number of Killing vectors. This number is $\frac{d(d+1)}{2}$. Constant curvature spacetimes are spacetimes ...
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1answer
210 views

Riemann tensor with 2nd and last indice the same will vanish?

I calculated that Riemann tensors are antisymmetric with respect to 2nd and last indice,as the symmetry properities of $R_{\rho\nu\sigma\mu}$ goes. $$R^{\omega}_{\ \ \ ...
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4answers
82 views

How does curved spacetime cause motion revisited

There was a previous question titled "Why would spacetime curvature cause gravity?" asked March 10, 2014. The answer given was essentially that since the time component of an object in curved space ...
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2answers
194 views

Is the popular explanation given for gravity in General Relativity misleading? [duplicate]

In most popular explanations of General Relativity, both in print and film/television, gravity is demonstrated using an example of a 2 dimensional plane being flat, then when putting a heavy object in ...
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1answer
47 views

Show that $R_{\mu\nu}=C g_{\mu\nu}$ from the vacuum Einstein equation with a nonzero $\Lambda$ [closed]

If I begin with the vacuum field equation with a nonzero cosmological constant: $$R_{\mu\nu}-\dfrac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu}R+g_{\mu\nu}\Lambda=0$$ How can I show that $$R_{\mu\nu}= ...
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1answer
92 views

What is the sum of the angles of a triangle on Earth orbit?

Gauss went out and measured triangles made up of mountain peaks to show that the angles sum up to 180 degree. However, general relativity leads to non-Euclidian space and I would like to get a better ...
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1answer
87 views

Thought experiment on space curvature due to gravity

Let's say you built a huge, straight rigid beam out in space, far from the sun (outside the orbit of Pluto). It is very long, say 200,000 miles long, but can be very narrow. Then you move it to the ...
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3answers
235 views

Is there proof gravity bends space or is it just the most convenient explanation?

I have read this sentence in an article: The theory [of general relativity] holds that gravity is geometry: particles are deflected when they pass near a massive object not because they feel a ...
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2answers
538 views

Vanishing of the Ricci tensor in higher spacetime dimensions

I understand how, if the Riemann tensor is 0 in all its components, since we construct the Ricci tensor by contracting the Riemann, Ricci tensor would be 0 in all components as well. I've read that ...
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1answer
39 views

Expanding the Ricci tensor by summing over indices

I had an attempt at deriving the Schwarzschild metric. This is a 4-dimensional problem where the indices are being summed from 0 to 3. I got up to the part where I calculate the Ricci tensor which is ...
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1answer
30 views

Dissipation in hyperbolic and spherical space

Say that we have a point that emits point particles that all travel at the same velocity in a random direction and neither their velocity nor their direction changes and neither does the position of ...
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2answers
182 views

Why does the FLRW metric assume constant curvature?

So the FLRW metric takes the following form in reduced-circumference polar coordinates. $$ds^2 = -c^2 dt^2 + a^2(t) \left(\frac{dr^2}{1 - k\, r^2} + r^2 (d\theta^2+sin^2\theta\, d\phi^2)\right)$$ ...
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0answers
94 views

What altitude you need to see the earth's curvature? [duplicate]

i have seen several videos and articles that nobody has seen earth's curvature except nasa. if someone has tried to go up to see earth curvature it seemed flat to them which makes some people to think ...
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0answers
44 views

Confusion in Special Relativity: Rotating frame of reference

Suppose we are observing a rotating frame from an inertial frame, free from gravity, and try to measure the circumference of a circle drawn in the rotating frame. Since our measuring rod would be ...
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1answer
155 views

Ricci tensor as relativistic Hamiltonian

I am little bit dissapointment with action integral in General relativity. The action integral is: $$ \int Rd^{4}x=\int R_{ij}g^{ij}d^{4}x\tag{1} $$ Where $$ ...
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50 views

Motion without matter

Suppose you have a vacuum spacetime with non zero cosmological constant then you can show that two test particles will move toward each other or apart depending on whether it is negative or positive ...