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.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

1
vote
1answer
50 views

Newtonian tidal forces and curvature

Today in my physics class, my lecturer said something which confused me. He said: "Newtonian tidal forces are reinterpreted as a manifestation of curvature in General Relativity". Now I know what ...
2
votes
6answers
492 views

Can energy be created and destroyed?

The indroduction of the principle of conservation of mechanical energy has been tremendously useful from the practical point of view. But .. Consider the case in which we shoot an electron up in the ...
1
vote
2answers
190 views

How can a black hole reduce the speed of light? [closed]

If the speed of light is always constant then how can a black hole reduce light's speed?
3
votes
1answer
115 views

How to explain centripetal force in terms or relativity

At the end of a video of dropping a ball and feathers in a vacuum, Brian Cox explains that the Ball and Feathers, as understood in terms of General Relativity, aren't falling. (apologies I can only ...
0
votes
0answers
32 views

Covariant Fluid Flow approach

I am doing Cosmological perturbation. Currently reading a paper by Bruni et al. In that it is mentioned that they are using covariant fluid flow approach to cosmology. Can any body give me a rough ...
0
votes
0answers
61 views

Topological implications of symbolic represenation of the relativity

I have seen in the online Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy in the entry on Copenhagen Interpretation of Quantum Mechanics that Niels Bohr had argued that the theory of relativity is not a literal ...
2
votes
1answer
52 views

What happens as the stable orbital velocity approaches the speed of light?

Based on my understanding of the relationship between planetary mass, orbital radius and the velocity for stable orbit, a satellite orbiting a mass equivalent to Earth with an altitude of ~5mm would ...
-1
votes
2answers
78 views

Why does Einstein's equation of relativity exclude space and time? [closed]

Taking $E={m}{c^2}$, we have mass and energy but no space and time. What is the best way of understanding the ways that space and time are passive and therefore unaccountable as mass and energy?
12
votes
8answers
5k views

What is a rocket engine thrusting against in space?

I know Newton's third law of motion might be the answer for this but still I am wondering how the rockets could thrust in the empty space and move in the opposite direction. I guess an astronaut ...
1
vote
1answer
157 views

Is black hole singularity a single point?

General relativity expressed in terms of differential geometry. And it lets you to do interesting things with the coordinates: multiple coordinates may refer to a single point, eg. the equirectangular ...
2
votes
4answers
117 views

Conservation of potential energy for a wormhole

So you managed to build a stable traversable wormhole. Somehow you managed to acquire the exotic negative-tension materials with sufficient densities to make it all work. Now you place opening A of ...
2
votes
0answers
51 views

Path of light in Kerr metric?

How can one find the trajectory of light in various direction in the Kerr metric? Just wondering if there are some classes of solutions, I don't need exact formula. Are there different classes than ...
3
votes
1answer
61 views

Gibbons-Hawking-York (GHY) boundary term for Schwarzschild metric

What is the simplest way to calculate Gibbons-Hawking-York boundary term for Schwarzschild metric? \begin{align} \int ...
2
votes
0answers
73 views

How does matter interact with spacetime? [closed]

It's easy to see how matter interacts with itself but how does it interact with spacetime which is "not" matter? Einstein showed us that mass and energy cause a curvature in spacetime, which intern ...
5
votes
1answer
169 views

Ray tracing in General Relativity

I would like to find out what one would see at the Schwarzschild radius of a massive non-rotating black hole, if the black hole is surrounded by a bright ring. For that, I would place the observer at ...
0
votes
1answer
123 views

Verifying a solution to Einstein's vacuum field equations

I need to verify a solution to Einsteins vacuum field equations. I have the solution as follows $$ds^2=a\,dt^2+b\,dr^2+\cdots$$ Is the following the right approach? Einsteins equation reduces to ...
3
votes
1answer
123 views

Is General Relativity based on a Symmetry?

In short: Is there any kind of symmetry one can start with to derive general relativity (GR)? Longer: Einstein had the opinion that GR was the generalisation of special relativity, because instead of ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Circular orbit in Schwarzschild coordinates [closed]

This was an example in a general relativity textbook which I've been trying to work through myself. A spaceship uses its rocket engine to maintain a circular orbit around a Schwarzschild black hole ...
1
vote
0answers
22 views

What is the rate at which the field of an electron spreads? [duplicate]

There are 2 steps in the creation of a force field: (1) first the object comes into existence (2) then the field appears. In the case when a photon splits into an electron and an antielectron, these 2 ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

Can we define the effective mass or the moving mass of a photon?

I know that the rest mass of a photon is zero. but the photon can be bent by gravity (which can also be explained by the curvature of space-time due to the effect of mass), this implies that it must ...
2
votes
0answers
87 views

What is the derivation of $E=mc^2$? [duplicate]

How did Einstein derive his most famous equation: $$E=mc^2$$ Is the above equation a special case of $$E^2=m^2c^4+p^2c^2$$ Its derivation? What is the difference between them?
2
votes
0answers
51 views

Gravitational multi instantons

I was reading "GW Gibbons and SW Hawking, Gravitational multi-instantons, Physics Letters B 78 (1978), no. 4, 430–432." I had a few questions regarding the metric they define. I was wondering how ...
4
votes
1answer
318 views

Angular momentum in curved spacetime

It is known that the angular momentum components are also a representation of the $SU(2)$ generators. Given a non-trivial spacetime, say a black hole of some kind or AdS space, how can one define the ...
6
votes
3answers
204 views

Recommended books for a “relativity for poets” class?

I teach physics at a community college and have developed a new course titled "Relativity for Poets," which I will be teaching for the first time in spring 2015. As implied by the title, it's a ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

What is Laplace operator of Schwarzschild-Spherical coordinates? [closed]

This is the Laplace operator of Spherical coordinates: What is the Laplace operator of Schwarzschild-Spherical coordinates? where the Differential displacement of Schwarzschild-Spherical ...
1
vote
0answers
32 views

Some books to bridge the gap before GR [duplicate]

I am extremely interested in GR, but somehow feel that the books I read are not really enough. Frankly, I find many question on this site and elsewhere completely bewildering, which makes me think ...
3
votes
1answer
122 views

Correct tetrad index notation

There seems to be some different conventions on the indexes of the tetrad. I am wondering which is the standard, which is correct, and which is an abuse of notation. In Sean Carroll's notes and in ...
1
vote
0answers
71 views

Metric with 5D signature: +---+

From a paper that a friend sent to me (on inflation theory which I am still in learner mode) a 5D signature +---+ was specified with the 5th dimension being a velocity dimension. I didn't know that ...
5
votes
3answers
152 views

Gravity - Force or Result?

I am no Physicist, but I enjoy reading about Physics. However reading about leading theories such as M-Theory and others they speculate about the existence of the Graviton. In my past reading of ...
4
votes
2answers
948 views

Is my interpretation of how a gravitational wave is formed correct?

I'm sure many here are familiar with the following image showing the 2D representation of how the fabric of spacetime is warped by the presence of mass:- Can this fabric be interpreted as an ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

One step in deriving the Einstein-Hilbert action

In this amazing first principles derivation of the Einstein-Hilbert action there is one small manipulation needed to show $$c g_{ab,cd}\left(\eta^{ac}\eta^{bd} - \eta^{ab}\eta^{cd}\right)$$ is ...
3
votes
1answer
393 views

How quickly does gravity extend from created mass? [duplicate]

I apologize in advance if this is a stupid or off-topic question. Since Energy can be converted into matter according to $E=mc^2$, how fast does it take for the gravity of that new matter to extend ...
1
vote
1answer
53 views

Increasing matter density in the Friedman equations?

From what I understand, the Friedman equation is $H^2=\frac{8\pi G}{3} \rho$ and the $H$, the Hubble constant, is a measure of the rate of expansion of the universe. What I am confused about is that ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

how to specify eigenfunctions(eigentensors) of Lichnerowicz operator?

Lichnerowicz operator is an operator which acts on transverse trace-free symmetric tensors. If this statement is correct, my question is that any transverse trace-free symmetric tensor is an ...
5
votes
1answer
301 views

Geodesic deviation equation - why does the ordinary second derivative give the correct answer?

I've calculated the correct answer to my problem, but don't understand one of the assumptions I made when doing so. I used the geodesic deviation equation ...
1
vote
0answers
25 views

General Relativistic Boltzmann Equation Verification

Let $(M,g)$ be a (pseudo)Riemannian manifold. Define on $TM$ the symplectic 2-form $\omega=dx^\mu\wedge dp_\mu$ and use $g$ to define the pull back $\omega_g=dx^\mu\wedge d(g_{\mu\nu}p^\nu)$. Define ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Cluster of Black Holes around a Central Point [duplicate]

Within the Star Wars Extended Universe, there is a science base on a small object within a near impenetrable sphere of Black Holes. These Black Holes remain in roughly the same position and, according ...
6
votes
0answers
71 views

Is there a null incomplete spacetime which is spacelike and timelike complete?

Geodesic completeness, the fact we can make the domain of the geodesic parametrized with respect an affine parameter the whole real line, is an important concept in GR. Especially, because the lack of ...
7
votes
1answer
133 views

Why is it so coincident that Palatini variation of Einstein-Hilbert action will obtain an equation that connection is Levi-Civita connection?

There are two ways to do the variation of Einstein-Hilbert action. First one is Einstein formalism which takes only metric independent. After variation of action, we get the Einstein field equation. ...
4
votes
1answer
113 views

Help understand article on thin shell formalism

I've been learning the Israel formalism (see original article here, although I prefer the exposition given by E. Poisson in his book A Relativist's Toolkit) for thin shells. I think I understand the ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

Determining zero energy from $k=0$?

I'm curious as to the equations necessary for finding a total energy of 0 (or, I suppose, the energy density of empty space due to quantum fluctuations) in a flat Friedmann universe such as ours. The ...
0
votes
0answers
63 views

Why doesn't this proof change indices?

In this pdf, in the second line of the proof, $\sigma$ was plugged in where it appears as $$\frac{\partial x^\sigma}{\partial y^{\rho'}}$$ Meanwhile in converting the coordinates of $g^{\mu'\rho'}$, ...
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Tidal affect on an object and the length contraction in Relativity Theory

According to the equivalence principle in general relativity theory; If an object are in free falling in a gravitational field,the object will not detect gravitational force on it. From this ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

Christoffell symbols manipulations [closed]

Why is it that $$\Gamma^\lambda_{\lambda\tau}\Gamma^\tau_{\mu\nu} = 0?$$ The same goes for $$\Gamma^\lambda_{\nu\tau}\Gamma^\tau_{\mu\lambda} $$which was set equal to zero by the author..
0
votes
2answers
62 views

Confused about equations for the Big Bang in general relativity ad loop quantum gravity?

I am trying to get a vague understanding of the mathematical equations for the Big Bang in GR and LQG. My understanding so far is that when the universe is assumed to be homogeneous and isotropic, ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Kaluza suggested metric

Is there a book or a paper that goes into the mathematical details of getting scalar curvature of the 5 dimensional metric that Kaluza wrote down? I am running into many mathematical issues for I am ...
4
votes
0answers
52 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 ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

Does Gravity Really Exist? [closed]

As far as I understand some of the readings, Gravity does not exist in real terms. It's only a way of modeling motion as we see. Einstein for example explained the motion without having to have ...
2
votes
0answers
43 views

What topics should I develop complete concepts in before I begin the derivation of GR? [duplicate]

I had just been trying to understand GR but i just cannot understand where some of the formula of field came from. Apparently all those initial formula are from Newtonian physics so please anyone ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

Modifying Newtonian gravity to fit observed precession of Mercury's orbit

The idea is to modify Newtonian gravity so that it fits measurements of orbits around the sun. For example the precession of Mercury's orbit unlike Newtonian $n$-body simulations. I'm currently not ...