1
vote
1answer
56 views

Collected Gravitational Field

I wasn't sure what to call this, I'm not a physicist. I basically have a collection of massive bodies. I to calculate the gravitational field of all those objects collected; how to do this? The ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

Modeling Spacetime In A Corpuscular Or Statistical Way

When I first read about Newton's gravity, it really bothered me. I didn't understand how shaking a lighter at the other end of the universe would instantly influence the lighter that was in front of ...
1
vote
2answers
207 views

Can a scalar field model gravity? How accurate would be the results? Are there any difficulties with such a model?

Newtonian gravity can be described by the equation: $$ \nabla^2 \phi = 4 \pi \rho G $$ where $\rho$ is the mass density, $\phi$ is the gravitational potential, and G is the universal gravitational ...
11
votes
3answers
1k views

Why can't General Relativity be written in terms of physical variables?

I am aware that the field in General Relativity (the metric, $g_{\mu\nu}$) is not completely physical, as two metrics which are related by a diffeomorphism (~ a change in coordinates) are physically ...
2
votes
2answers
154 views

Inertial Mass of a scalar field

Does it make sense to talk of the inertial mass of a scalar field? By the equivalence principle, it must be equal to its gravitational mass. We know that the scalar field contributes towards the ...