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

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Variation with respect to the metric and other tensors

When varying an action with respect to tensors and the metric, I'm afraid I get confused as how to one organizes the Lagrangian and then performs the variation. Take for example, the following example ...
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1answer
27 views

Poincare Group (Wald, Chapter 4 Page 59)

In Wald's text on general relativity, he mentions that in special relativity, many different global inertial coordinate systems are possible and can be put into one-to-one correspondence with elements ...
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1answer
98 views

Usage of tensors in physics

As I understand it, tensors are multi-linear maps that map vectors (and dual vectors) to real (or complex) numbers, but I'm hoping to gain some intuition as to why they are useful in physics. Is it ...
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8answers
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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 ...
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32 views

Gauss-Weingarten equation

In E Poisson "A relativist tool kit" p.75 it says that the Gauss-Weingarten relation is: $$e^{\alpha}_{a;\beta}e^{\beta}_{b}=\Gamma^{c}_{ab}e^{\alpha}_{c}-\epsilon K_{ab}n^{\alpha}$$ We have the ...
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1answer
30 views

Commuting of the covariant derivative: Menzel's Mathematical Physics

Menzel defines covariant differentiation as equivalent to partial differentiation with respect to the general coordinates. “To indicate the covariant nature of the differential operator, set ...
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1answer
114 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
30 views

Second covariant derivative, computation problem

I am having a question on the wikipedia article http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_covariant_derivative Using the notation therein I don't get why $(\nabla_{u}\nabla_{v}w ...
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3answers
66 views

Covariant Derivative of Kronecker Delta

I am reading Carroll's book on GR right now, and I ran into a little trouble in his chapter 3 on curvature. He is establishing the properties of the covariant derivative, and claims that the fact that ...
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1answer
25 views

Global Hyperbolicity in spacetime Manifold [on hold]

If space time is timelike or null geodesically incomplete but cannot be embedded in a larger spacetime then we say that it has singularity. What does incompleteness means here?
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92 views

Two dimensional spacetime and the Gauss Bonnet theorem

Generally two dimensional spacetimes are deemed to be static, as the Gauss Bonnet theorem implies that the Einstein Hilbert action would be a constant independent of $g$. But as far as I can tell, ...
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76 views

Scalar Curvature of a Conformally Flat Metric

Suppose that you have a metric $g_{\mu\nu}=\phi^2\eta_{\mu\nu}$ for some function $\phi$. There is a standard formula for what the scalar curvature $R$ looks like in terms of $\phi$, which is given by ...
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67 views

Coupling a spinor field to a preexisting scalar field?

So I'm not a physicist, but I'm thinking about a mathematical problem where I think physical insight might be useful. We're working on a Riemannian manifold $(M,g)$ (positive definite metric) with a ...
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246 views

Killing tensor and Riemann tensor identity

I know that if we have a Killing vector then it's straightforward to show the identity: $$\nabla_a \nabla_b K_c = R_{cba}^k K_d$$ I'm now trying to show the following identity for a $(0,2)$ Killing ...
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0answers
28 views

Are general coordinate transformations and diffeomorphisms the same? [duplicate]

Infinitesimal diffeomorphisms $x{}^\mu \rightarrow x{}^\mu + \xi{}^\mu$ (with $\xi{}^\mu \ll 1$) change geometric objects by means of the Lie derivative, that is, $X \rightarrow X + \mathcal{L}_\xi \, ...
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Question on $E_8$ and twistor space [closed]

The Kahler $4$ form constructed from two-forms $\{\alpha, \beta\} \in H^2(M,\mathbb Z)$, and $M$ a $4$-manifold, is induced by $\alpha\wedge\beta$ with the map $H^2(M, \mathbb Z)\otimes H^2(M, \mathbb ...
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1answer
228 views

How can I mathematically describe the parallel transport in the Roman soldiers example?

I've been trying to understand parallel transport. Many of the descriptions present a mathematical version: $\nabla_V X = 0$. And/or they present an example involving soldiers (usually Roman) ...
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1answer
66 views

Signature of $f: \Lambda^2(\mathbb{R}^4) \times \Lambda^2(\mathbb{R}^4) \to \mathbb{R}$, $f(\omega, \omega') = \omega \wedge \omega'$ [closed]

Define$$f: \Lambda^2(\mathbb{R}^4) \times \Lambda^2(\mathbb{R}^4) \to \Lambda^4(\mathbb{R}^4) \cong \mathbb{R}, \quad f(\omega, \omega') = \omega \wedge \omega'.$$ What is the signature of $f$? ...
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Homotopy proof of the lack of foliation of the Gödel metric

A common proof of the lack of foliation of the Gödel universe, apparently mostly copy pasted from Hawking and Ellis, goes thusly : A closed timelike curve must cross a spacelike hypersurface ...
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1answer
102 views

Covariant derivative of a covariant derivative

I'm trying to find the covariant derivative of a covariant derivative, i.e. $\nabla_a (\nabla_b V_c)$. This is something I've taken for granted a lot in calculations, namely I though that by the ...
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0answers
35 views

Schwarzschild metric, speed of ball as measured by observer who catches the ball, just before ball is caught? [closed]

Inspired by this question here. The Schwarzschild metric, describing the exterior gravitational field of a planet of mass $M$ and radius $R$, is given by$$ds^2 = -(1 - 2M/r)\,dt^2 + (1 - ...
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Induced metric is a scalar for transformation from $x\to x'$? (Poisson E.A p.62)

I have a (simple) question about the induced metric $h_{ab}$. In Poisson E.A. (a relativist toolkit) it says in p. 62 that the induced metric $$h_{ab}=g_{{\alpha}{\beta}} \frac{\partial ...
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21 views

torsion tensor proof [closed]

I looked up torsion tensor derivation on 2 different books, and encountered 2 different situations, so my mind has been confused. For the first image, I could totally understand how torsion tensor was ...
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30 views

probability of striking the circular ring by gas molecules

In kinetic theory we use probabilistic case to derive pressure, no. Of molecules having speed c to c+dc or in such cases.and to derive such equations we introduce a term called "SOLID ANGLE" I come ...
3
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1answer
64 views

How do you actually use the geodesic equation?

The geodesic equation used in general relativity is the following: $$ {d^2 x^\mu \over ds^2} =- \Gamma^\mu {}_{\alpha \beta}{d x^\alpha \over ds}{d x^\beta \over ds}. $$ It states that the ...
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1answer
31 views

Lie Derivative of Kahler 2-form

Suppose there is a Killing vector $k$ on a Kahler manifold $M$. By definition, $k$ generates isometries of the metric. That is, $L_kg=0$, where $L$ is the Lie derivative. At the same time, there is a ...
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2answers
76 views

Lie derivative for a covariant derivative of vector

I would like to calculate the $\mathcal{L}_\xi(\nabla_a K^b)$ for the case where $\mathcal{L}_\xi(K^b)=0$ The only Idea that I have is that $$\mathcal{L}_\xi(\nabla_a ...
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3answers
628 views

How to show that every Killing vector field is a matter collineation?

Various texts make this claim, but no proof is given. Explicitly, let $L$ denote the Lie derivative. Suppose $L_X g_{ab} = 0$ for some vector field $X$, called a Killing vector field. Suppose that ...
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52 views

Determinants in path integrals in gauge theories and geometry

I know that in the formalism of path integral it is easy to show how determinants, corresponding to gauge fixing condition and FP ghosts, appear. But there is strict explanation of these determinants ...
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46 views

Why is the Einstein Static Universe represented as an infinite cylinder when it seems like only half a cylinder?

The Einstein static universe metric is $$ds^2=-dt^2 + d\chi^2 + \sin(\chi)^2d\Omega^2$$ where $-\infty<t<\infty$ , $0<\chi<\pi$ and $d\Omega^2$ is the metric on a $S^2$. It describes the ...
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Two Robertson-Walker observers, at what time will a light signal be received?

Here is a question I have that is inspired by this question here. The spacetime metric of a radiation-filled, spatially flat ($k = 0$) Robertson-Walker universe is given by$$ds^2 = - dT^2 + T[dx^2 + ...
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1answer
56 views

Torsion in kerr black holes

In General Relativity, we generally assume that the derivative operator is torsion-free, i.e., second covariant derivatives commute on functions. However, in Kerr black holes, spacetime is dragged ...
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2answers
292 views

Non-trivial scalar quantity

Is there any scalar quantity made of only the Christoffel symbols, determinant of a metric and tensors, not derivatives? In other words, can we construct a scalar quantity which cannot be written in ...
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Orthogonal geodesics to hypersurfaces [migrated]

Say we have a Riemannian manifold $(M, g)$ with vector field $Y$, obeying: $g(Y, Y) = 1$; and the $1$-form $\varphi(X) = g(X, Y)$ is $d$-closed, $d\varphi = 0$. I know that the integral curves of ...
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1answer
40 views

Problem books for concept building in applications of Riemannian and other geometries to mechanics

As a student of physics I have learned solving Euler equations for rigid bodies by solving examples and exercises in self-contained books rather than understanding the proofs of Euler equations (I ...
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Lapse Function and Shift Vector in Minkowski and de Sitter

I'd like to find the lapse function and shift vector in 1+1 Minkowski as well as 1+1 de Sitter (flat foliation) for a region foliated this way: The $y$-axis represents time while the x-axis ...
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1answer
51 views

Schwarzschild metric, acceleration of ball before it's dropped [duplicate]

The Schwarzschild metric, describing the exterior gravitational field of a planet of mass $M$ and radius $R$, is given by$$ds^2 = -(1 - 2M/r)\,dt^2 + (1 - 2M/r)^{-1}\,dr^2 + r^2(d\theta^2 + ...
3
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1answer
48 views

Why does the 'Jacobian of at least one combination of $n$ functions shall be different from zero'?

I've started reading The Variational Principles of Mechanics by Cornelius Lanczos; here is the concerned excerpt from p. 11: The generalized coordinates $q_1,q_2,\ldots, q_n$ may or may not have a ...
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1answer
46 views

Wald's Equation 3.3.6

I have an issue with Eq. 3.3.6 of Wald's General Relativity. There he would like to prove that for Gaussian normal coordinates, the geodesic tangent field remains orthogonal to all coordinate basis ...
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52 views

Flux with or without sources

I want to check whether my understanding about flux is correct. So let me consider a $d$-dimensional spacetime manifold $M$ and a $(p+2)$-form flux (or field strength) $F$. Then there are two ...
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The Lagrangian as a metric

My question is, can the (classical) Lagrangian be thought of as a metric? That is, is there a meaningful sense in which we can think of the least-action path from the initial to the final ...
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1answer
235 views

What are the equations of motion for the scalar field in the tetrad formalism?

The action of a massless scalar field in curved spacetime is given by: \begin{equation} S(\phi)=\int d^{4}x \sqrt{-g}\left(g^{\mu\nu}\phi_{,\mu}\phi_{,\nu}\right) \end{equation} Now the action can ...
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1answer
57 views

How can you tell if spherical-like coordinates are locally flat across the origin?

In general relativity, with spherical-like coordinates in a radial gauge, I have a metric that looks like: $$-g_{tt}\mathrm{d}t^2 + g_{rr}\mathrm{d}r^2 + r^2(\mathrm{d}\theta^2 + \sin^2\theta\ ...
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What is basic tensor algebra in teleparallel equivalent of general relativity?

Teleparallel gravity represents a viable alternative to general relativity where gravitation comes from torsion rather that curvature. The theory is based on a new modified connection, and the ...
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317 views

What are the mathematical models for force, acceleration and velocity?

In mechanics, the space can be described as a Riemann manifold. Forces, then, can be defined as vector fields of this manifold. Accelerations are linear functions of forces, so they are covector ...
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A question on the Chern number and the winding number?

Let $\mid \psi(x,y) \rangle$ be a normalized wavefunction living in a $d$-dimensional Hilbert space and depend on two real parameters $(x,y)$ that belong to a closed surface (e.g., $S^2, T^2$, ...). ...
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1answer
469 views

Stokes' theorem in complex coordinates (CFT)

I am studying CFT, where I encounter Stokes' theorem in complex coordinates: $$ \int_R (\partial_zv^z + \partial_{\bar{z}}v^{\bar{z}})dzd\bar{z} = i \int_{\partial R}(v^{z}d\bar{z} - v^{\bar{z}}dz). ...
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2answers
75 views

Straight line null geodesics in Minkowski, De Sitter and Schwarzschild

I'm trying to understand which part of the following metric determines whether photons travel on a "straight" line (thinking of $(t,r,\theta,\phi)$ as a flat background), the metric I'm considering ...
3
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29 views

Integral curves of vector field are geodesics [migrated]

Say we have a Riemannian manifold $(M, g)$ with vector field $X$ obeying the following: $g(X, X) = 1$; and the $1$-form $\varphi(Y) = g(Y, X)$ is $d$-closed, $d\varphi = 0$. Does it necessarily ...
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Volume form of the AdS_{4} Space

Regarding the unit radius $AdS_{4}$ space, the metric in global coordinates, is given by: $$ds^{2}_{AdS_{4}}=\frac{1}{\cos^{2}{\rho}}[dt^{2}-d\rho^{2}-\sin^{2}\rho d\Omega_{2}^{2}]$$ where ...