Mathematical discipline which uses the techniques of calculus to study geometric problems. General relativity is written in this language.

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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 ...
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0answers
36 views

Free Components of the Riemann Tensor

Knowing the symmetries of the Riemann tensor, it is known that in 4-dimensional space we would have only 20 free components. My question is: How one can decide which components are necessary to ...
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1answer
105 views

Lie derivative in this paper [closed]

Say, $$L_{V}z^A =0$$ but I don't know much about Lie derivatives except what I saw now through wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lie_bracket_of_vector_fields#Definitions that it is (if I am ...
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1answer
67 views

Will a stress-energy tensor have the same identities as it's metric?

Say I have a metric tensor where $$g_{00} = -c^{2}\ and $$ $$g_{01}=g_{02}=g_{03}=0$$ and $$g_{12}=g_{13}=g_{23}$$ and $$g_{11}=g_{22}=g_{33}$$ My question is straightforward: would the same or ...
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1answer
443 views

Does magnetic monopole violate $U(1)$ gauge symmetry?

Does a magnetic monopole violate $U(1)$ gauge symmetry? In what sense and why? Insofar as I know, there are at least two types of magnetic monopoles. One is the Dirac monopole while the other is the ...
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1answer
101 views

Geodesic equation

I have a technical question about the geodesic equation. Assume we have a frame $(E_{1},E_{2},E_{3},E_{4})$ (not necessarily a coordinate frame). Assume we have a parametrized curve $\gamma(s)\in M$ ...
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3answers
381 views

Given the Wikipedia notion of “arc length”, how is its manifestly real “signed variant” to be called and denoted?

I am dissatisfied with the presentation (not to say "definition") of "arc length", in its "Generalization to (pseudo-)Riemannian manifolds", as given in Wikipedia. (Who isn't?. But I'll sketch it here ...
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1answer
162 views

Understanding the covariant derivative and its relation to parallel transport

I have been reading section 3.1 of Wald's GR book in which he introduces the notion of a covariant derivative. As I understand, this is introduced as the (partial) derivative operators $\partial_{a}$ ...
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2answers
118 views

Symplectic structure and isomorphisms

In his book Mathematical Methods of Classical Mechanics, V.I. Arnold writes To each vector $\xi$, tangent to a symplectic manifold $(M^{2n},\omega^2)$ at the point $\mathbf{x}$, we associate a 1-...
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1answer
538 views

Inverse Metric Tensor

First the setup: Let $\mathcal M$ be a $2$-dimensional manifold. Let $U_P$ be some open neighbourhood of a point $P \in \mathcal M$. Let $\mathcal F : U_P \rightarrow \mathbb R \times \mathbb R$ be ...
2
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1answer
152 views

Fastest way to find the curvature terms from a given metric [closed]

I want to find the spherically symmetric, static solutions to Einstein's equations $$ R_{\mu \nu} - \frac{1}{2}Rg_{\mu \nu} = 0 $$ in four dimensions using the metric $$ g_{\mu \nu}dx^{\mu}dx^{\nu} ...
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1answer
51 views

Given any metric, how to find the straight line path between two points? [closed]

Say we are given a two-dimensional metric $$ds^2=f_1(x)dx^2+f_2(x)dy^2,$$ for any kind of function. How do we calculate the distance along a straight line path (not the shortest possibly) between, say,...
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2answers
361 views

Is there an accepted axiomatic approach to general relativity?

I am reading Steven Weinberg's book Gravitation and Cosmology. He makes a big deal out of the equivalence principle and showed a bunch of deductions you can make based on it. This surprised me since ...
2
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1answer
106 views

Doubt regarding the dimension of a manifold

I'm very unsure about all this business so please forgive any inaccuracies in my question. Essentially what I'm having trouble understanding right now is how we "decide" the dimensionality of a ...
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1answer
55 views

Invariance of the low energy effective string action

It is well known that the action of General Relativity $$S = \frac{1}{16\pi G}\int R\;\sqrt{-g} d^D X$$ is invariant under "diffeomorphisms". The low energy effective action for bosonic strings is $...
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0answers
131 views

Chocolate dynamics

Now I have found a possible model on how to describe chocolate when it is chewed. It has to do with geometrical transformations when a curve $\gamma$ intersects a manifold $M$. The chocolate is ...
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1answer
59 views

What does “local composite symmetry” mean in ${\cal N}=8$ $d=5$ supergravity?

What does it mean "local composite symmetry" in supergravity? Specifically, I don't understand very well the local composite symmetry ${\rm USp}(8)$ in ${\cal N}=8$ $d=5$ supergravity.
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2answers
272 views

Is a spinor in some sense connected to space?

Spinors transform under the representation of $SL(2,\mathbb{C})$ which is the double cover of the Lorentz group $SO(1,3)$ - or in the non-relativistic case under $SU(2)$, the double cover of $SO(3)$. ...
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0answers
37 views

Assigning an asymptotic power to the volume form?

I was reading about the covariant theory of asymptotic symmetries in this review: http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/0111246 I have a question about eq. (1.8), but before I ask I should describe what the ...
2
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1answer
396 views

Are the Jacobi equation and the geodesic deviation equation related?

On page 111 in his book Riemannian Geometry, Manfredo Do Carmo states what he calls the Jacobi equation \begin{equation} \frac{D^2J}{dt^2} + R(\gamma'(t),J(t))\gamma'(t) = 0 \end{equation} ...
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1answer
261 views

Spin connection and covariant derivative [closed]

How to prove explicitly (i.e., to don't postulate it) that by including Lorentz indices $a$ the covariant derivative $D_{\mu}$ looks like $$ D_{\mu}A^{\nu a} = \partial_{\mu}A^{\nu a} + \Gamma^{\nu}_{\...
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1answer
104 views

What does this Hodge dual symbol $\star_3$ mean?

We know that in this $$\star {f(...)}$$ the $\star$ represents the Hodge dual. But in this: $\star_3 f(...)$ what does specifically the $\star_3$ symbol mean?
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2answers
202 views

Properties of Hodge Duality

So we know that Hodge duality works this way $$⋆(dx^i_1 \wedge ... \wedge dx^i_p)= \frac{1}{(n-p)!} \epsilon^{i_1..i_p}_{i_{p+1}..i_n} dx^{i_{p+1} } \wedge dx^{i_n}$$ where $p$ represents the $p$ in ...
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4answers
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Can a metric in General Relativity, Supergravity, String Theory, etc., be asymmetric?

Why is it that all problems I encountered until now have metrics that when represented in a matrix form turn out to be symmetric? Aren't there asymmetric matrices representing some metrics?
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1answer
81 views

Duality and 1 forms

How is a dual map defined if we are talking about partial derivatives and 1 forms?
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3answers
266 views

If a Killing vector field is timelike, can it be set to $\partial/\partial t$?

If one has a Killing vector that turned out to be a timelike Killing vector field because of negative norm. Can we set this Killing vector field equal to $\partial/\partial t$?
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5answers
195 views

Is $ds^2$ just a number or is it actually a quantity squared?

I originally thought $ds^2$ was the square of some number we call the spacetime interval. I thought this because Taylor and Wheeler treat it like the square of a quantity in their book Spacetime ...
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1answer
157 views

What is the covariant basis around a Schwarzschild black hole? [closed]

First of all, I'm not interested in time for this question. So lets consider a 3-manifold whose metric is the spatial part of the Schwarzschild metric, so it has the event horizon and the singularity ...
2
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1answer
143 views

components of mixed tensor with same indices

If my tensor $a^{\mu\nu}=$ matrix of 4*4 size (let's say, in 1+3 dimensions with mostly negative convention for the metric), what is $a^{\mu}_{\mu}$ ? Is it the trace or the vector of diagonal ...
10
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3answers
738 views

Why do the Einstein field equations (EFE) involve the Ricci curvature tensor instead of Riemann curvature tensor?

I am just starting to learn general relativity. I don't understand why we use the Ricci curvature tensor. I thought the Riemann curvature tensor contains "more information" about the curvature. Why is ...
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2answers
188 views

Metric tensor in SRT

I just read on this webpage that we have (click me) $g_{\alpha \beta} = g_{\alpha}^{\beta} = g^{\alpha \beta}.$ Now, although I understand that the first and the last one are equal, I don't think ...
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0answers
141 views

Norm of Killing vector field

Let us suppose we have a Killing vector field with $X^a = 1/2$ and $X^b = 1/3$ and $g_{ab}=1$ where the other $c$ and $d$ components are zero. Now we want to find its norm: The formula for finding ...
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1answer
85 views

Geodesic deviation

In S. Carroll Lecture Notes on General Relativity, chapter 6, pages 152-153 we have equation (6.62) $$\tag{6.62} \frac{\partial^2}{\partial t^2} S^\mu=\frac{1}{2} S^\sigma \frac{\partial^2}{\partial ...
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1answer
171 views

How to find a metric of a general observer?

Yes, that's it. How to find a particular metric of an observer in general relativity? Let's say we have a static metric: $$ds^2=-g_{00}(\vec{r})dt^2+d\vec{r}^2=-g_{00}(\vec{r})dt^2+g_{ij}(\vec{r})dx^...
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1answer
101 views

Naturalness of tensor fields in general relativity?

In the third chapter of the book The Large Scale Structure of Space-Time, the authors say regarding the matter fields in general relativity: These fields will obey equations which can be expressed ...
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3answers
552 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 ($\gamma$) ...
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1answer
98 views

Can I simply find the Christoffel symbols by dividing by $g$?

Given the following equation \begin{equation} g_{\alpha\delta} \Gamma^{\delta}_{\beta\gamma} = \frac{1}{2} \left(\partial_\gamma g_{\alpha\beta} + \partial_\beta g_{\alpha\gamma} - \partial_\alpha ...
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1answer
169 views

Generalized spin connection and dreibein in higher spin gravity

I am studying 3D higher spin gravity and I would like to know the mathematical and physical meaning of generalized spin connection and generalized dreibein that appear in this theory. It is well known ...
8
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1answer
507 views

What kind of object is the Landau--Lifshitz pseudotensor?

I understand that it's called a pseudotensor because it's not a tensor. Wikipedia says most pseudotensors are sections of jet bundles, which are perfectly valid objects in GR. (http://en....
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1answer
309 views

Lapse function definition

Let $t$ be a time function and $t^a$ the time flow vector such that $t^a\nabla_a t=0$. Let $\Sigma_t$ be a hypersurface of constant $t$ with unit normal $n^a$, $n^a n_a=-1$. Wald (1984), p. 255 ...
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0answers
84 views

Are there relativistic theories with spacetime modelled on $\mathbb C^4$ rather than real Minkowski space $\mathbb R^4$?

Does anybody know of references to theories where relativity & spacetime is modelled on a (complex/Kähler) manifold which is locally diffeomorphic to $\mathbb C^4$ rather than $\mathbb R^4$, hence ...
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1answer
91 views

Physical interpretation of diffeomorphism from $SO(3)$ to $\mathbb R \mathbb P^3$

I am not good at picturing either $SO(3)$ or $\mathbb R \mathbb P^3$, the latter denoting the real projective space. Can someone give me a rough physical understanding of the geometry and implication ...
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1answer
253 views

What is an “Einstein transformation” in general relativity?

When introducing the vielbein formalism in general relativity, I came across the use of an infinitesimal general transformation, or Einstein transformation. The latter term seems not to be covered on ...
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3answers
335 views

What besides the metric do you need to set up the EFEs and the geodesic equation?

One of my professors wrote on the board (1) Mass tells spacetime how to curve $\to$ Metric/Einstein Field Equations (2) Spacetime tells mass how to move $\to$ Geodesic equation Suppose I am given ...
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3answers
150 views

Is a metric tensor field the same thing as $ds² = -dt² + dx²+ dy² + dz²$?

I am having trouble understanding the nature of the metric tensor field on spacetime manifolds. In particular, a Riemannian manifold $(M,g)$ is defined as a real smooth manifold $M$ equipped with an ...
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0answers
111 views

Are Laplace Operator and mean curvature exactly the same thing for 2D function?

Let's assume we study 2D function/surface f(x,y). Then Laplace Operator is defined as: $$\nabla^2 f=\frac{\partial^2f}{\partial x^2}+\frac{\partial^2f}{\partial y^2}$$ And the mean curvature: let $\...
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1answer
226 views

Geodesic equation from the proper time integral

This is something that has been bothering me for a little while. The usual procedure that I've seen is to write the proper time as the line integral $$\tau=\int_\gamma d\tau$$ along some curve $\gamma$...
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3answers
627 views

How to visualize the gradient as a one-form?

I am reading Sean Carrol's book on General Relativity, and I just finished reading the proof that the gradient is a covariant vector or a one-form, but I am having a difficult time visualizing this. I ...
2
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2answers
304 views

Difference between the metric tensor in general relativity and the metric tensor in mathematics?

Is the metric tensor in general relativity the same as the metric tensor in maths, or is there a difference?
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2answers
143 views

Why is the cosmological constant a scalar?

Maybe my understanding is just off, but the cosmological constant is just a scalar, right? What are it's units? Why a scalar? - was a tensor 'cosmological constant' ever considered or is it just not ...