A theory that describes how matter produces and responds to the geometry of space and time. It was first published by Einstein in 1915 and is currently used to study the structure and evolution of the universe, as well as having practical applications like GPS.

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Faster-than-light communication using Alcubierre warp drive metric around a single qubit?

The Alcubierre warp drive metric has been criticized on the points of requiring a large amount of exotic matter with negative energy, and conditions deadly for human travellers inside the bubble. What ...
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933 views

How do we determine the temperature of a Black Hole?

How do we determine the temperature of a Black Hole? Since we cannot see a Black Hole, which I presume, is because it absorbs light, would it not also prevent radiation from escaping, making ...
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1answer
2k views

Why is light described by a null geodesic?

I'm trying to wrap my head around how geodesics describe trajectories at the moment. I get that for events to be causally connected, they must be connected by a timelike curve, so free objects must ...
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2answers
280 views

Computing the path of photons near a black hole

For a simulation, I want to compute the path that light follows near a black hole. Non-relativistically, a massive point particle in a central newtonian gravitational field follows either an ellipse, ...
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1answer
377 views

Do spacelike junctions in the Thin-Shell Formalism imply energy nonconservation and counterintuitive wormholes?

The Thin Shell Formalism (MTW 1973 p.551ff) is used to properly paste together different vacuum solutions to the Einstein equations. At the junction of the two solutions is a hypersurface of matter – ...
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The relativistic mechanics of a battery that is being charged and accelerated at the same time

This might be an interesting question: Let's attach a battery into one end of an electric cable. Then we rotate the battery around, with accelerating speed, using 100 Watts of power, while the ...
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2answers
3k views

Does a photon exert a gravitational pull?

I know a photon has zero rest mass, but it does have plenty of energy. Since energy and mass are equivalent does this mean that a photon (or more practically, a light beam) exerts a gravitational pull ...
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1k views

Abstract Algebra in Relativity and Cosmology?

Is Abstract Algebra useful in theoretical Relativity and/or Cosmology? If so can anyone give me some examples or point me towards a good book with that emphasis if it is one? Thanks in advance.
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605 views

Why does large curvature of spacetime imply high temperature?

I`ve just stumbled about a sentence which says that high curvature of spacetime implies that any matter present is at high temperature. This somehow confuses me, so my probably dumb question(s) are: ...
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2answers
243 views

Are we going to be able to travel trough space deforming the space-time?

I'm not talking about the speed of the spaceship. If we can deform space-time we needn't any type of propulsion. And how can the travel affect to it's pilots? Can they survive?
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569 views

Equivalence of definitions of ADM Mass

ADM Mass is a useful measure of a system. It is often defined (Wald 293) $$M_{ADM}=\frac{1}{16\pi} \lim_{r \to \infty} \oint_{s_r} (h_{\mu\nu,\mu}-h_{\mu\mu,\nu})N^{\nu} dA$$ Where $s_r$ is two ...
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3answers
252 views

Tension on a cable in a gravitational field

Consider a mass 'm' suspended in the gravitational field of a massive star. Assuming the Schwarzschild metric it is easy to calculate the gravitational acceleration at the location of the mass and ...
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3answers
587 views

Does spacetime in general relativity contain holes?

Are there physical models of spacetimes, which have bounded (four dimensional) holes in them? And do the Einstein equations give restrictions to such phenomena? Here by holes I mean ...
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3answers
324 views

Evidence that “space exists rather than just particles”

What is (theoretical) evidence that you need to define all of space with properties rather than just stating where all particles are? I mean, does every single coordinate x, y, z have a meaning or ...
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2answers
641 views

Lorentz invariance of the 3 + 1 decomposition of spacetime

Why is allowed decompose the spacetime metric into a spatial part + temporal part like this for example $$ds^2 ~=~ (-N^2 + N_aN^a)dt^2 + 2N_adtdx^a + q_{ab}dx^adx^b$$ ($N$ is called lapse, $N_a$ is ...
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1answer
207 views

Derivative of quantities with internal indices

In the context of the 3 + 1 decomposition of spacetime needed for a Hamiltionian formulation of general relativity, quantities with so called internal indices are introduced (in the book I am reading ...
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1answer
135 views

Question from Schutz's

In q. 22 in page 141, I am asked to show that if $U^{\alpha}\nabla_{\alpha} V^{\beta} = W^{\beta}$, then $U^{\alpha}\nabla_{\alpha}V_{\beta}=W_{\beta}$. Here's what I have done: $V_{\beta}=g_{\beta ...
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2answers
302 views

Finding the correct units for the energy-momentum tensor?

I'm trying to understand the energy-momentum tensor $T^{\mu\nu}$ but I'm confused about the units. My textbook says the components of $T^{\mu\nu}$ are $\mathrm{Jm^{-3}}$. Four-momentum is is given ...
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1answer
367 views

How do I calculate the induced metric in the Gibbons–Hawking–York boundary term?

This question concerns the expression for the induced metric in the explicit variation of the GHY boundary term. Just how is that expression derived in detail from the definition of the induced metric ...
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3answers
277 views

From the perspective of an observer inside a black hole's horizon, where does the energy for Hawking radiation come from?

Would energy be seen to "flow" to the outside of the black hole? Through what mechanism?
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1answer
158 views

Hawking radiation: direct matter -> energy conversion?

When a black hole evaporates, does it turn all the matter that has fallen in directly to energy, or will it somehow throw back out the same kind of matter (normal or anti) that went in?
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5answers
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Does a charged particle accelerating in a gravitational field radiate?

A charged particle undergoing an acceleration radiates photons. Let's consider a charge in a freely falling frame of reference. In such a frame, the local gravitational field is necessarily zero, ...
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3answers
185 views

Analyticity and Causality in Relativity

A few weeks ago at a conference a speaker I was listening to made a comment to the effect that a function (let's say scalar) cannot be analytic because otherwise it would violate causality. He didn't ...
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2answers
646 views

Deriving Birkhoff's Theorem

I am trying to derive Birkhoff's theorem in GR as an exercise: a spherically symmetric gravitational field is static in the vacuum area. I managed to prove that $g_{00}$ is independent of t in the ...
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2answers
250 views

What should be the equation satisfied by The Momentum commutators in a curved background?

This may be obvious but I have limited experience in physics , The generators of Spatial translation symmetry commutes with each other i.e [P(i),P(j)] = 0 but if Spacetime is a curved manifolds then ...
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819 views

Have red shifted photons lost energy and where did it go?

I think the title says it. Did expansion of the universe steal the energy somehow?
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415 views

Equivalence principle and radiation from falling particle

I am currently having a hard time solving a problem of GR from Lasenby's book. I can't make it more clear than by quoting the exercise: 7.2 A charged object held stationary in a laboratory on the ...
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2answers
298 views

A simple thought experiment about traversable wormholes

Let's say I have a tube, of large radius (about 5 - 7 meters in diameter), with traversable wormholes at the ends. The wormholes are arranged as such that if something falls inside one hole from ...
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5answers
839 views

Can you use a wormhole to travel through space not time?

I want to know if you could theoretically travel from your house to work via a wormhole but stay in the present day...without changing time. Kind of like teleportation but harnessing the energy of a ...
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1answer
265 views

Experimental proof of gravitational redshift of light

Has the gravitational red shift been proven for electromagnetic waves only or also for a single photon?
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12answers
4k views

How can anything ever fall into a black hole as seen from an outside observer?

The event horizon of a black hole is where gravity is such that not even light can escape. This is also the point I understand that according to Einstein time dilation will be infinite for a ...
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1answer
668 views

Stokes' theorem in GR

I read this formula in Sean Carroll's book of GR: $$\int_{\Sigma}\nabla_{\mu}V^{\mu}\sqrt{g}d^nx~=~\int_{\partial\Sigma}n_{\mu}V^{\mu}\sqrt{\gamma}d^{n-1}x$$ where n is the 4-vector orthogonal to ...
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1answer
604 views

Discrete point particles stress energy tensor

I am trying to solve an exercise in Sean Carroll's GR book "Spacetime and Geometry". Basically we need to derive the stress-energy tensor of a perfect fluid (ie $T^{\mu\nu}=(\rho +p)U^{\mu}U^{\nu} + ...
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130 views

How to test whether galaxies are moving away from each other in a static background or whether space is being created beween them?

Observations show that galaxies are moving away from one another on the macroscopic scale. Now, scientists interpret this by saying this happens not because galaxies are really moving away from each ...
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1answer
251 views

Contraction of indices

We use contraction of indices method to manipulate Tensors. However, I cannot relate that manipulation visually. We can change covariant tensor to contravariant tensor and vice versa by contracting ...
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767 views

Visualizing Ricci Tensor

By definition Ricci Tensor is a Tensor formed by contracting two indices of Riemann Tensor. Riemann Tensor can be visualized in terms of a curve, a vector is moving and orientation of the initial and ...
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1answer
232 views

Fourier Methods in General Relativity

I am looking for some references which discuss Fourier transform methods in GR. Specifically supposing you have a metric $g_{\mu \nu}(x)$ and its Fourier transform $\tilde{g}_{\mu \nu}(k)$, what does ...
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2answers
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Riemann Tensor Calculation trick(number of element)

When we calculate Riemann Tensor for different curvature we have lots of components. However, there are many components that are zero. How can we argue, based on the symmetry of connection , that ...
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1answer
302 views

Thought experiment about acceleration

Case 1: two people wake up in spaceships accelerating at 1g. They can measure or observe anything inside the room but not outside. They couldn't determine if they were on a spaceship or on earth. ...
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2answers
329 views

Foliation of hypersurfaces in General Relativity

As I understand it, it is usual in GR to define a foliation of Spacetime by a family of spacelike hypersurfaces "indexed" by the time variable. Then, in the context of Schwarzschild metric in ...
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3answers
419 views

storing energy (as mass)

When chemical energy is released mass is reduced, if only by a negligible amount. Presumably that's true for all energy. And presumably that works in reverse as well: storing energy involves an ...
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1answer
570 views

Blandford-Znajek process: Why/how does the current flow along the magnetic field lines

Related: How would a black hole power plant work? I have put a bit of commentary enumerating my confusions in parentheses I read in Black Holes and Time Warps (Kip Thorne), that quasars can generate ...
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1answer
137 views

Are there any clear and expressive plainword sense of metric tensor components?

Can the following groups of components of metric tensor can assigned a clear sense? https://docs.google.com/drawings/pub?id=1kVqkN1gT-a2fDy2S851l9iQKaMfaatCDo517OSZBHEo&w=467&h=228 I have ...
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2answers
179 views

Should $E$ and $B$ change with Gravity?

Lets examine a typical GR metric: $$ds^2=g_{00}dt^2-g_{11}dx^2-g_{22}dy^2-g_{33}dz^2$$ The "d" going with ds has its correct meaning when the path is specified with respect to a one dimensional ...
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3answers
242 views

Why can't we think of free fall as upside down rocket?

/\ / \ | | | m | | | ------ <--- floor (Rocket A) This rocket is accelerated (g) upwards then mass(m) falls on the floor. ...
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1answer
303 views

Superposition of Ricci scalars [closed]

Suppose I have two point/line singularities in spacetime (what is important to me is that they are localized). Also suppose I have some fields in spacetime and that the two singularities interact with ...
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2answers
347 views

What does a closed time-like curve look like?

I want to see a plot of closed time-like curve in $(t,x)$. $t$ - vertical axis $x$ horizontal axis (the usual setting just neglect $y$ and $z$ components of $(t,x,y,z)$). What does it look like?
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238 views

Are objects in a gravitational well shortened?

Bob is in a gravitational potential well, he moves a long vertical stick up and down a distance of 1 meters. Alice observes the upper end of the stick, at upper location. There is the phenomenon of ...
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Incompatibility Between Relativity and Quantum Mechanics

Why does Gravity distort space and time while the electromagnetic, strong, and weak forces do not? Does this have to do with why Quantum Mechanics and Relativity are incompatible?
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1answer
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Can dark matter and energy be formulated as local perturbations of the metric

Note, my formal physics education ended over ten years ago so I may be missing some obvious piece of understanding. The relationship between space-time and matter/energy distribution is described by ...