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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General relativity and the microscopic/macroscopic distinction

Here is Wikipedia's diagram of the stress-energy tensor in general relativity: I notice that all of its elements are what would be termed "macroscopic" quantities in thermodynamics. That is, in ...
4
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1answer
1k views

How do Einstein's field equations come out of string theory?

The classical theory of spacetime geometry that we call gravity is described at its core by the Einstein field equations, which relate the curvature of spacetime to the distribution of matter and ...
17
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1answer
2k views

Is String Theory formulated in flat or curved spacetime?

String Theory is formulated in 10 or 11 (or 26?) dimensions where it is assumed that all of the space dimensions except for 3 (large) space dimensions and 1 time dimension are a compact manifold with ...
2
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0answers
64 views

What is (or where can I discover) the Burke Potential?

I have very much enjoyed William L. Burke's Applied Differential Geometry. Reading around on the web it seems that he discovered something which is called the (retarded) Burke Potential, but I have ...
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2answers
368 views

Are the intersections of past and future light cones spacelike?

Given a timelike reference worldline (not necessarily geodesic), we can define light-cone coordinates $\tau^+$ and $\tau^-$ so that the 3-D hypersurfaces of constant $\tau^+$ are past light cones of ...
3
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1answer
627 views

Problem with convergent geodesics at 2D sphere

There is a chapter on general relativity in the book Spacetime Physics Introduction To Special Relativity by Taylor and Wheeler, which qualitatively explains how attractive gravitational force can be ...
0
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1answer
195 views

Information faster-than-light and GR vs. QM

What is meant by the statement that information cannot travel faster than light? If I write down something on a paper, isn't there according to QM a non-zero probability that an identical paper can ...
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1answer
255 views

Way to escape from a black hole

I’ve had a question on WHY a traveler couldn’t “escape” from a black hole under specific conditions (I have an image I'd like to send to clarify, but the website won't let me)> The key is for the ...
18
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1answer
532 views

Positivity of Total Gravitational Energy in GR

I read the following statement in the introduction to an article: Over the last 30 years, one of the greatest achievements in classical general relativity has certainly been the proof of the ...
1
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1answer
393 views

Where did Karl Schwarzschild derived his solution?

Does anyone know more about circumstances of Karl Schwarzschild at the Russian front in 1915 where he allegedly derived his famous solution of the Einstein equations (describing a black hole)? Sources ...
4
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3answers
694 views

Vacuum energy and perpetual motion

The part of the Einstein equations of general relativity referred to vacuum energy, introduce a repulsive term in gravity. This means that as the space become bigger and bigger, vacuum part become ...
2
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4answers
178 views

How do black holes accrete mass?

Thanks to time dilation, a distant observer watching a man fall in to a black hole will only see him asymptotically approach the event horizon. So how do black holes ever get bigger?
2
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1answer
1k views

Tiling hexagons on a sphere surface

In attemopt to understand basic principles of non-Euclidean geometry and its relation to physical space, I am reading General Relativity by Ben Crowell. On page 149 there is a discussion of hexagons ...
4
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2answers
403 views

Another faster-than-light question

Imagine we have something very heavy (i.e supermassive black hole) and some object that we can throw with 0.999999 speed of light (i.e proton). We are throwing our particle in the direction of hole. ...
5
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1answer
502 views

Kerr geodesics differential equations in equatorial plane

With friend, we are writing an interactive educational simulation of particle falling into a black hole. Currently we use Schwarzschild geodesics. However, we want to generalize it to the case of ...
15
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2answers
1k views

Is spacetime flat inside a spherical shell?

In a perfectly symmetrical spherical hollow shell, there is a null net gravitational force according to Newton, since in his theory the force is exactly inversely proportional to the square of the ...
-1
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1answer
109 views

What else does the fabric of space-time do?

I know that, the fabric of space is bended so there is a path for another planet to follow to cause gravity I.E. the sun and the earth ( i think) Is htere any othe rthing's the fabric of space-time ...
2
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1answer
296 views

What's the difference between the equivalence principle and curvature of spacetime?

Calculating using the equivalence principle only accounts for half the deflection of light, whereas the other half is from curvature of space-time. But isn't the equivalence principle the same thing ...
5
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3answers
370 views

Extending General Relativity with Kahler Manifolds?

Standard general relativity is based on Riemannian manifolds. However, the simplest extension of Riemannian manifolds seems to be Kahler manifolds, which have a complex (hermitian) structure, a ...
3
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1answer
940 views

What bends fabric of space-time?

I know that mass can bend fabric of space-time, which causes gravity by making an object curve around a planet or star but is there anything else that can bend it? Other energy sources, forces ...
4
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5answers
2k views

Gravity stronger than electromagnetic force in a black hole?

Well, the question has somewhat been answered before, but there's one part missing, which - I'd think - is in conflict with the physical laws. The earlier reply says that the gravitational pull even ...
1
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1answer
84 views

Ultracold atoms and General theory of Relativty

I am looking for good reviews for the subject of Ultracold atoms and it's application in test of General theory of relativity. I am planning to pick up this topic as a semester project, can somebody ...
0
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1answer
1k views

Metric tensor under coordinate transformation x to y(x)

Say I have a metric representation $g_{\mu\nu}$ in a coordinate system $x$ and I want to find the representation of the metric in a new set of coordinates $y = y(x)$. I know how to do this if you are ...
1
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1answer
151 views

Symmetries of spacetime and objects over it

I guess according to mathematical didactic, we first think of spacetime as a set and we reason about elements of its topology and then it's furthermore equipped with a metric. Appearently it is this ...
1
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1answer
123 views

Is there a formula to work out how much the fabric of spacetime bends?

From my knowledge, a big mass (planet star etc) can bend the fabric of spacetime. Is there a formula that we can use to work out how much it bends?
23
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2answers
1k views

Are gravitational waves longitudinal or transverse?

Waves are generally classified as either transverse or longitudinal depending on the they way the propagated quantity is oriented with respect to the direction of propagation. Then what is a ...
2
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3answers
477 views

Is the Schwarzschild black hole unphysical?

To obtain the Schwarzschild metric from Einstein equations of general relativity, we suppose that the energy density is a distribution : $$ \rho (\vec{r}) = M \delta(\vec{r})$$ The Schwarzschild ...
10
votes
1answer
458 views

Causal and Global structure of Penrose Diagrams

What kind of global and causal structures does a Penrose diagram reveal? How do I see (using a Penrose diagram) that two different spacetimes have a similar global and causal structure? Also, I ...
16
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5answers
2k views

Why does no physical energy-momentum tensor exist for the gravitational field?

Starting with the Einstein-Hilbert Lagrangian $$ L_{EH} = -\frac{1}{2}(R + 2\Lambda)$$ one can formally calculate a gravitational energy-momentum tensor $$ T_{EH}^{\mu\nu} = -2 \frac{\delta ...
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1answer
319 views

Linearized Einstein Equations

I've been trying to prove this equation: $$ \delta ...
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1answer
100 views

Is it fabric of space or fabric of space-time?

Very quick question, in the general relativity is it fabric of space, fabric of space-time or both mentioned?
4
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3answers
591 views

Do Christoffel symbols commute?

Do Christoffel symbols commute? For example, does $\Gamma^{e}_{db}\Gamma^{c}_{ea} = \Gamma^{c}_{ea}\Gamma^{e}_{db}$?
0
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3answers
244 views

How many pieces of toast would you need to make a black hole?

I am trying to find the following: How many pieces of toast would you need to make a black hole? From what I've learnt so far I need to find an equation for the compression force the massive amount ...
8
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2answers
888 views

Was the Higgs mass correctly predicted by asymptotic safety of gravity?

This paper was published in Phys Lett B in 2009, and predicted the Higgs mass to be 126 GeV based on the asymptotic safety of gravity. Is this prediction taken seriously by the theory community, or is ...
13
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5answers
6k views

Is the total energy of the universe constant?

If total energy is conserved just transformed and never newly created, is there a sum of all energies that is constant? Why is it probably not that easy?
6
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3answers
376 views

Einstein tensor in Friedmann equations : where is the missing $c^2$?

I would like to demonstrate the several forms of the Friedmann equations WITH the $c^2$ factors. Everything is fine ... apart that I have a missing $c^2$ factor somewhere. In all the following $\rho$ ...
7
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2answers
3k views

Killing vector fields

I am facing some problems in understanding what is the importance of a Killing vector field? I will be grateful if anybody provides an answer, or, refer me to some review or books.
2
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1answer
340 views

Cosmology with a negative cosmological constant

Based on the Friedmann equation for a universe with only cosmological constant, $$\left(\frac{\dot{a}}{a}\right)^2 \sim \Lambda$$ I would expect the scale factor $a(t) \sim e^{-it}$ if $\Lambda < ...
4
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1answer
135 views

Rotation of Spacetime => Change in orbit/path

Along the idea of frame-dragging; Will the rotation of a black hole, which has some velocity v and angular momentum, influence its path in 3D space? I've seen the fact that depending on the ...
2
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1answer
232 views

Why are black hole singularities stable?

The Friedmann equations says that huge matter densities lead to huge expansion rates. In Newtonian gravity, two massive point particles separated by an infinitesimal distance will experience an ...
0
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1answer
267 views

What is meant by the term “mean rest frame”?

I found this part in the book of Bernard Schutz on GR. (Sec 12.2: General Relativistic Cosmological Models). Robertson-Walker metrics: We shall adopt the following assumptions about the universe: ...
9
votes
2answers
852 views

If you are carrying a magnet, can you tell when you cross the event horizon of a black hole?

By the no hair theorem, a black hole is completely characterized by it's mass, charge and angular momentum. Therefore dipole and higher pole magnetic fields are completely expelled when a black hole ...
0
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2answers
435 views

How to think of the harmonic oscillator equation in terms of “acceleration = gradient”

This is related to another question I just asked where I learned that the equation of motion of a harmonic oscillator is expressed as: $$\ddot{x}+kx=0$$ What little physics I grasp centers on ...
7
votes
1answer
466 views

What is the status of existing measurements of the speed of gravity?

In replying to a recent question I stated: Gravitational waves have not been yet experimentally observed so as to have their velocity measured. Which after the fact prompted me to try and verify ...
14
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0answers
503 views

Do intergalactic magnetic fields imply an Open Universe?

According to a paper on the arXiv (now published in Phys Rev D), they do. How credible is this result? The abstract says: The detection of magnetic fields at high redshifts, and in empty ...
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1answer
505 views

Why are we talking about space curvature as if we know what space is? [closed]

1) Why are we talking about space curvature as if we know what space is? Every question about gravity seems to evoke an answer involving "space curvature" which seems like an undefined placeholder ...
2
votes
3answers
570 views

Taking a derivative involving Einstein summation

Suppose I have something like $ f = g_{\mu \nu} x^{\mu} x^{\nu} $, where the Einstein summation convention is implied. Now suppose I want to to take the derivative $ \partial_{\mu}f = \frac{\partial ...
1
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2answers
159 views

Most suitable metric for the Solar system?

If I wanted to solve the Einstein equations for the solar system, which choice of $g_{\mu\nu}$ and $T_{\mu\nu}$ is more suitable? I thought about using a Schwarzschild metric near each planet, but ...
0
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1answer
287 views

Classical approach to Schwarzschild radius

The Schwarzschild radius from general relativity is given to be $r = \frac{2GM}{c^2}$. One can obtain the same answer using classical calculations. That is, the escape velocity of a particle is ...
5
votes
1answer
419 views

If a magnetic monopole falls into a schwarzchild black hole, what happens to the magnetic field?

By the no-hair theorem, black holes can only have mass, charge and angular momentum. Does "charge" include "magnetic charge" (such as from a magnetic monopole)? Can black holes have magnetic charge ...