A theory that describes how matter interacts dynamically with 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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Einstein Field Equations and Electromagnetic Stress-Energy Tensor

My question is: if we write Einstein field equations in this form: $$R_{\mu\nu} - \dfrac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu}R=8\pi \dfrac{G}{c^4}T_{\mu\nu}$$ Then the left hand side is one statement about the geometry ...
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General Relativity Equivalence

Is Einsteins Equivalence theorem in General Relativity correct? It seems to me that it neglects the fact that gravitational acceleration depends upon separation distance squared, thus neglecting the ...
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162 views

How to choose a solution from all possible solutions of general relativity

So there are so many solutions for general relativity - then how does one "choose" the solution that is right one? By checking with observation? (though I also know that it is currently unknown which ...
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Does the distance to the cosmic horizon Lorentz-contract? Does the universe Lorentz-contract?

Our universe has a finite size. It is often called the "radius of the universe", or "distance of the cosmic horizon". If we would fly with relativistic speed at the position of our Earth, would this ...
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237 views

Vacuum-ether and spacetime

In the past you could not give an explanation for various phenomena in which there was an action at a distance, like magnetism or gravity, that occurred in a vacuum; For this reason, ether was ...
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Is the curvature of spacetime invariant? Could it be characterized as the ether?

I'm writing a paper for a Philosophy of Science course about GR/SR and I'm wondering if I can (1) characterize the curvature of spacetime as invariant and (2) argue that this is what Einstein referred ...
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340 views

Is the quantization of gravity necessary for a quantum theory of gravity? Part II

(At the suggestion of the user markovchain, I have decided to take a very large edit/addition to the original question, and ask it as a separate question altogether.) Here it is: I have since ...
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225 views

Relationship between a formal vector derivative and time evolution of an operator

I'm an undergraduate in physics, with all the lack of knowledge inherent in that. In two of my classes, my professors introduced two equations which look eerily similar. The first, from general ...
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248 views

Jacobi's matric formulation for tensors

Hi I am trying to derive the E field equation and am stuck using the Jacobi formula, is this correct: $$\delta \det g_{\mu \nu} = Tr(ADJ(g_{\mu\nu}\delta ...
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432 views

Hawking Radiation: how does a particle ever cross the event horizon?

The heuristic argument for Hawking Radiation is, that a virtual pair-production happens just at the event horizon. One particle goes into the black hole, while the other can be observed as radiation. ...
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288 views

Material strain from spacetime curvature

Let's say that you moved an object made of rigid materials into a place with extreme tidal forces. Materials have a modulus of elasticity and a yield strength. Does the corresponding 3D geometric ...
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126 views

Strings on a curved spacetime

Suppose we are interested in in string on a specific metric G, is it necessary to include a Dilaton field on back ground in order to preserve the Weyl invariance? suppose the spacetime is not empty, ...
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Similarity between the Coulomb force and Newton's gravitational force

Coulomb force and gravitational force has the same governing equation. So they should be same in nature. A moving electric charge creates magnetic field, so a moving mass should create some force ...
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Surely space-time Curvature does not explain gravity, it just describe its effects?

In special relativity co-moving objects see the other's 4-velocity as being only temporal. When they move relative to each other they see the other's 4-velocity has rotated so that it points less in ...
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494 views

Lagrangian definition of stress energy tensor

Can anyone explain why $T_{\mu \nu} = \frac{2}{\sqrt{-g}} \frac{\delta \mathcal{L}_M}{\delta g^{\mu \nu}} $, other than justifying it from the Einstein field equations?
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233 views

Boundary conditions of relativistic wave solutions?

If you take Einstein's field equations, \begin{equation} R_{\mu\nu}-\tfrac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu}R = -\kappa T_{\mu\nu}, \end{equation} and you insert the metric \begin{equation} g_{\mu\nu} = \eta_{\mu\nu} ...
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70 views

Constraint on a metric

Given a metric of the form $$ds^2=dr^2+a^2\tanh^2(r/b)d\theta^2$$ why does it follow that $a=b$? I can't quite spot a constraint condition...
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about the 1D singularity of black hole

I saw some responses here saying that the singularity into the black hole is one dimension object so my question is : is it possible that the singularity is simply a merger of the 4 dimensions of the ...
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635 views

Does gravitational redshift imply gravitation time dilation?

The EEP is used to justify that if an observer on the ground shoots a beam of light towards a tower, then when the light reaches the tower, it will be red shifted. This is because of what happens in ...
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398 views

Is light affected by gravity? Why?

I would like to know if light is affected by gravity, also, I would like to know what is the correct definition of gravity: "A force that attracts bodies with mass" or "a force that attracts bodies ...
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If matter creates space, shouldn't there be experimentally detectable consequences?

Ernst Mach, a man to who influenced Albert Einstein significantly in his approach to relativity, did not quite seem to believe in space as a self-existing entity. I'm pretty sure it would be correct ...
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Is the speed of sound almost as high as the speed of light in neutron stars?

Have you ever wondered about the elastic properties of neutron stars? Such stars, being immensely dense, in which neutrons are bound together by the strong nuclear force on top of the strong gravity ...
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How is the second-order covariant derivative of a scalar computed?

What is second-order covariant derivative $$\nabla_i\nabla_jf(r)$$ in terms of $r,\theta, g(r)$ and partial derivative, given that the metric takes the form $$ds^2=dr^2+g(r)d\theta^2$$ and $f$ is a ...
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Flat space metrics

This question concerns the metric of a flat space: $$ds^2=dr^2+cr^2\,\,d\theta^2$$ where $c$ is a constant. Why is it necessary to set $c=1$ to avoid singularities and to restrict $r\ge 0$? Thanks.
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Question about proper time in general relativity

I think I may have some fundamental misunderstanding about what $dt, dx$ are in general relativity. As I understand it, in special relativity, $ds^2=dt^2-dx^2$, we call this the length because it is ...
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634 views

Does local physics depend on global topology?

Motivating Example In standard treatments of AdS/CFT (MAGOO for example), one defines $\mathrm{AdS}_{p+2}$ as a particular embedded submanifold of $\mathbb R^{2,p+1}$ which gives it topology ...
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133 views

An infalling object in a black hole looks “paused” for a far away observer, for how long?

As I understand, to an observer well outside a black hole, anything going towards it will appear to slow down, and eventually come to a halt, never even touching the event horizon. What happens if ...
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571 views

In what limit does string theory reproduce general relativity? [duplicate]

In quantum mechanical systems which have classical counterparts, we can typically recover classical mechanics by letting $\hbar \rightarrow 0$. Is recovering Einstein's field equations (conceptually) ...
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260 views

Equation of state of cosmic strings and branes

I'm sure these are basic ideas covered in string cosmology or advanced GR, but I've done very little string theory, so I hope you will forgive some elementary questions. I'm just trying to fit some ...
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488 views

Why is $\langle \partial_{\mu} f(x) \rangle=0$?

I'm reading page 488 of Hobson, Efstathiou & Lasenby, and I don't understand something they write... so I came here. The concept they describe is in linearised general relativity. In particular, ...
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543 views

Does Kaluza-Klein Theory Require an Additional Scalar Field?

I've seen the Kaluza-Klein metric presented in two different ways., cf. Refs. 1 and 2. In one, there is a constant as well as an additional scalar field introduced: $$\tilde{g}_{AB}=\begin{pmatrix} ...
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231 views

Black hole accretion of dark energy

Dark energy physically can be interpreted as either a fluid with positive mass but pressure the negative of its density (pressure has units of energy/volume, and energy is mass), or a property of ...
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283 views

In what way is the Riemann curvature tensor related to 'radius of curvature'?

In Misner, Thorne & Wheeler, they say, in their delightful 'word equations' that $$\left(\frac{\mathrm{radius\,\, of \,\,curvature}}{\mathrm{of\,\, spacetime}}\right) = ...
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336 views

What does it mean that Einstein's equations are hyperbolic-elliptical?

I says on Wolfram MathWorld that Einstein's field equations are a set of "16 coupled hyperbolic-elliptic nonlinear partial differential equations". What does it mean that the equations are ...
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334 views

Divergence theorem over entire space on non euclidean spaces

I'm a physics major so bear with me here on the math. This is related to a problem from the textbook General Relativity - Wald. In classical electromagnetism if we have a vector field say $V$ defined ...
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Do residents of the Hudson Bay area have more time?

Apparently there is a gravity anomaly in the Hudson Bay Area in Canada: gravity is "missing" or it is slightly less than it is in the rest of the world. Does that mean that things in the Hudson Bay ...
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169 views

How is the direction of time determined in general relativity?

In special relativity every frame has its own unique time axis, represented in Minkowski diagrams by a fan-out of time vectors that grows infinitely dense as you approach the surface of the light cone ...
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Why must the gravitational wave components be much less than unity?

We start with the metric tensor \begin{equation} g_{\mu\nu}(x) = \eta_{\mu\nu} + h_{\mu\nu}(x) \end{equation} in the linearised theory, or \begin{equation} g_{\mu\nu}(x) = \bar{g}_{\mu\nu}(x) + ...
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Is there a book that discusses General Relativity in terms of Modern Differential Geometry? [duplicate]

All of the physics books that I've seen which discuss General Relativity do so in terms of coordinates - the tensor calculus - even though the naturally relevant entities are invariant under general ...
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247 views

Hamiltonian constraint in spherical Friedmann cosmology

I'm taking a GR course, in which the instructor discussed the 'Hamiltonian constraint' of spherical Friedmann cosmology action. I'm not quite clear about the definition of 'Hamiltonian constraint' ...
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247 views

Kaluza-Klein Christoffel Symbols

I have a question regarding the connection coefficients as they pertain to the following paper: http://www.weylmann.com/kaluza.pdf . When I try to calculate the 4D Christoffel symbols from the 4D part ...
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167 views

Are group representations possible when the solution space is not a vector space?

As far as I understand, the motivation for using representation theory in high energy physics is as follows. Assume that a theory has some (internal or external) symmetry group which acts on a vector ...
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3answers
614 views

Why do clocks measure arc-length?

Apologies in advance for the long question. My understanding is that in GR, massive observers move along timelike curves $x^\mu(\lambda)$, and if an observer moves from point $x^\mu(\lambda_a)$ to ...
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57 views

Why does the local inertial compass coincide with the stellar compass?

I found this physics paper via a non-duality site and I wished that I could understand it. Could someone please either read it and explain it to me or else point me to pages that would help me ...
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631 views

Expression for distance of closest approach in Schwarzschild Geodesics

The Wikipedia article Two-body problem in General Relativity uses two length-scale variables, $a$ and $b$, to simplify the math. For some information about these, consider these statements from the ...
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429 views

What is the Riemann curvature tensor contracted with the metric tensor?

Can the Ricci curvature tensor be obtained by a 'double contraction' of the Riemann curvature tensor? For example $R_{\mu\nu}=g^{\sigma\rho}R_{\sigma\mu\rho\nu}$.
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Setting up a local-coordinate system in space-time using only a single clock and light beams

I have a question to ask about the operationalist view of space-time. I am a mathematician who happens to be interested in physics, so if anyone thinks that my question is a silly or vague one, please ...
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59 views

The definition of $f_{NL}$ and transfer function

To me there seems to be quite a few different definitions of $f_{NL}$ in cosmology and I would like to know if or how they are equivalent. Let me cite at least 3 such, One can see the equation 6.71 ...
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Order = Energy = Mass?

Here is a following problem I encountered when chatting about physics with my friend: Let us imagine a classical example of ordered state of matter in thermodynamic sense: let's take a cylinder ...
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310 views

Propagating degrees of freedom of graviton

What is the best way to see that the number of propagating degrees of freedom or gravitons in 3 dimensions is $0$ ? By graviton I mean the metric and NOT some topologically massive graviton that one ...