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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Existence of affine parametrization

This is a question from General Relativity by Wald Chapter 3, problem 5. Given either pseudo-Riemannian or Riemannian metric $g_{ab}$ and manifold $M$. Assume the $\nabla$ is compatible with the ...
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127 views

Speed of light and warp drives in general relativity

Velocities can be a tricky thing in general relativity. A cool concept seemly consistent with the Einstein field equations) is an Alcubierre drive, described by the Alcubierre metric. However, I ...
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How does a world line of an Alcubierre drive look like?

In my recent question ”Speed of light and warp drives in general relativity” I asked exactly how an Alcubierre drive worked and exactly what "FTL travel" meant. One of the comments I got stated that: ...
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The equation of the deflection angle

I am reading this book about Introduction to Gravitational lensing. $\alpha$ is defined here as the deflection angle. I am struggling to understand Equations 3.24, 3.25, 3.26. What does ...
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50 views

Any textbook about non-renormalizability of gravity?

I have learned general relativity in a graduate-level. My knowledge about QFT is very rudimentary. But, I need to learn about non-renormalizability of gravity. I have these questions. Is there any ...
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Can everything be described without anything needing to actually “bend”?

Is space bending because gravity actually causes small particles to move differently? If large source of gravity is somewhere are particles extending towards it, creating a "bend" in space? So "bend" ...
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Angle sum of triangle in Schwarzschild solution

Curvature of space is often intuitively explained as angles of a triangle not adding up to 180 degrees. My questions concerns that. Suppose you have a perfectly spherical star of uniform density - so ...
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28 views

Variation of quadratic term in modified Einstein-Hilbert actions

In the context of mimetic gravity at some point one try to add to an already modified Einstein-Hilbert action also a term like $$ S_\chi=\int\,d^4x\,\sqrt{-g}\frac{1}{2}\gamma\chi^2,\qquad(\star) $$ ...
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6answers
358 views

Empty universe in the past, non-empty in the future

My question is the following. Are there solutions to the Einstein field equations, which have the property that there is a hypersurface of constant time and to the past of that surface space is empty ...
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Is every spacetime metric physically realizable?

Is every spacetime metric physically realizable? I know that given any spacetime metric, you could work out a stress-energy tensor for each position that would result in that metric. However, I also ...
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How energy curves spacetime?

We know through General Relativity (GR) that matter curves spacetime (ST) like a "ball curves a trampoline" but then how energy curves spacetime? Is it just like matter curvature of ST?
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Does the actual curvature of spacetime hold energy?

My understanding of GR is that curvature of spacetime reflects the density of energy-matter. Does the curvature itself have energy? Or if energy is assigned to curvature it simply reflects the energy ...
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Is a black hole's mass uniformly distributed?

If you were to fly around a black hole, would the gravitational pull be uniform and centered on the singularity, regardless of your relative location? If yes, how can this be consistent with models ...
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36 views

Does spacetime curvature increase when an attractor's potential energy is converted to kinetic energy?

Imagine an asymptotically flat spacetime with nothing but two stars at a certain distance. They fall into each other and form one big star, so their potential energy is converted to kinetic energy. ...
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1answer
48 views

Mass and Schwarzschild Radius [duplicate]

Do free massless particles have a Schwarzschild radius? I'm curious about the mass in the equation for the Schwarzschild radius. I know that you can calculate a Schwarzschild radius for any massive ...
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1answer
133 views

How warped spacetime bends trajectories of light and moving objects?

I fail to see why the light follows something like the blue line and not the green line on the attached image. Figure 1 - light bends around warped spacetime Afaik. something similar happens ...
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39 views

Can you recover the values of spacetime intervals $s^2$ from given causal relations between events?

Given a suitable set $\mathcal S$ of events together with their (pairwise) causal relations, i.e. for each pair of distinct events $\mathsf A, \mathsf B \in \mathcal S$ the assignment whether ...
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Short Gamma Ray Bursts from black hole mergers

I have read in passing that short gamma ray bursts can be caused by the merger of 2 black holes in a binary system. I have Googled but can't seem to find any good sources describing the phenomenon ...
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Can you recover a spacetime from its null geodesics?

So, I know that you can learn a lot about a spacetime from its causal structure, but can one completely recover the metric of a spacetime, just knowing the equations for the null geodesics in it? If ...
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1answer
42 views

A question about the physics involved in tracking satellites such as those used in the GPS system [duplicate]

I know that besides the effects of Newton's theory of Gravitation on the satellite's motion, one has to take account of the retardation of the satellite's clocks when compared to earth-fixed clocks. ...
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1answer
45 views

What force causes massive objects to bend space? [duplicate]

The visualization of gravity as shown by this video is pretty good at explaining how massive objects bend space, and such bending causes objects around it to fall towards it (a.k.a: gravity). ...
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354 views

What is the minisuperspace Lagrangian for gravity plus a scalar field?

In this paper by Sean Carroll and Grant Remmen, in equation (11) they write a Lagrangian of the form $$\boxed{\mathcal{L}=3a\left(k-\dot{a}^2\right)+a^3\left[\frac{1}{2}\dot\phi^2-V(\phi)\right]}$$ ...
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“Proper mass” and “gravitational binding energy” in general relativity

I'm reading Robert Wald's "General Relativity" and after the discussion of the Schwarzschild Solution it goes on to talk about interior, static, spherically symmetric solutions. Wald says that "M" in ...
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1answer
106 views

How to derive the Schwarzschild metric?

I'm having trouble differentiating the following when making a change of co-ordinates to determine the Schwarzschild metric. $$r'^{2}=r^{2}C(r)$$ Then taking the total derivative of both sides, the ...
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1answer
102 views

Schwarzschild Solution

I'm able to derive the Schwarzschild solution under the assumptions that the metric is (1) static (2) spherically symmetric and that the space is the vacuum. However, I have read that the ...
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116 views

Curvature based derivation of Schwarzschild Metric

I'm a third year maths undergrad and I'm trying to find (and follow) a curvature based derivation of the Schwarzschild metric, if there exists such a proof?
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Does the effect of spaghettification mean that (speculative) traversable wormholes can only exist from supermassive black holes? [on hold]

Assumption that wormholes really exist. Even if humanity could produce wormholes from quantum black holes. These would be never traversable due to the effect of spaghettification? Or does the exotic ...
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175 views

Thermal radiation in the Unruh Effect

The following formula has been given in 't Hooft's black holes notes ($|\Omega \rangle$ is the vacuum state of Minkowski space, O is a operator): $$\langle \Omega| O|\Omega \rangle = \sum_{n \ge 0} ...
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3answers
117 views

If time is relative, how could time pass? [duplicate]

EDIT: I appreciate people who answered below. But it does not answer the question, so I will clarify my questions: -It seems like everyone is saying that time passing is actualized by physical ...
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What component of the stress–energy tensor contains the kinetic energy of heat? [duplicate]

As I understand it, the component $T_{00}$ of the stress-energy tensor contains the energy density (which equals the mass density), $T_{0i}$ are the impulse flows (intuitively speaking, the ...
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1answer
53 views

Gravitational redshift in a general stationary metric

Suppose you have a general metric $g_{\mu \nu}(t,r,\theta,\phi)$ which don't depend explicitly on $t$ coordinate, i.e a stationary metric. Light travels along a geodesic from A (at which the frequency ...
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90 views

Can a Dyson Sphere around a Black Hole be built so that it would not radiate significant IR?

This is related to this question If the sphere surrounded a BH and used it as a heat dump (as well as extracting energy from it by dropping in mass) could its exterior be engineered to match the ...
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53 views

What $f(R)$ models pass most of the known constraints? [on hold]

In most papers and talks about $f(R)$ gravity authors repeatedly state that the model proposed by Starobinsky 2007 $$ f(R)=R+\lambda\,R_{0} \bigg[\bigg(1+\frac{R^{2}}{R_{0}^{2}}\bigg)^{-n}-1\bigg] ...
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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 ...
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What is the binding energy of a neutron star?

Neutrons which constitute a neutron star have a rest mass that is greater when separated from the star because they are bound with a certain potential energy. This potential energy causes the system ...
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0answers
29 views

How to explain the homogeneity of the universe through a physic model [duplicate]

If in general, two objects homogenize themself by combining it's parts, why the horizon effect, based on a big bang model, excludes such an important physical interaction process? I wonder if this ...
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Why do physicists trust black hole physics?

Based on popular accounts of modern physics and black holes (articles, video lectures), I have come to understand the following: Black holes are predicted by General Relativity, a classical theory ...
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1answer
124 views

Closed timelike curves in the spin-2 gravity formalism

Let's say we take some topologically trivial CTC spacetime, like the Gödel metric: $$ds^2 = -dt^2 - 2e^{\sqrt{2}\Omega y} dt dx - \frac{1}{2}e^{\sqrt{2}\Omega y} dx^2 + dy^2 + dz^2$$ And then I ...
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1answer
114 views

Spin connection and covariant derivative

How to prove explicitly (i.e., to don't postulate it) that by including Lorentz indices $a$ the covariant derivative $D_{\mu}$ looks like $$ D_{\mu}A^{\nu a} = \partial_{\mu}A^{\nu a} + ...
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1answer
57 views

Does an object traveling near the speed of light create a gravitaional field? [duplicate]

Does a particle traveling near the speed of light create an observable/measureable gravitational field around it? I know most elementary particles travel near the speed of light and have no ...
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1answer
41 views

3-cylinder surface element (Poisson's “A Relativist's Toolkit”)

From Poisson's "A Relativist's Toolkit": he introduces the non-dynamical term $$ S_0=\frac{1}{8\pi}\int_{\partial\Omega}\epsilon K\sqrt{\lvert h\rvert}d^3x $$ in the GR action, where $h$ is the ...
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Particle energy in conformal FRW spacetime?

Let us start with the flat-space FRW metric in Cartesian co-ordinates for simplicity: $$ds^2=-dt^2+a(t)^2(dx^2+dy^2+dz^2).$$ In GR the energy of a particle is given by: \begin{eqnarray*} ...
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2answers
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How to define $\delta{g_{\mu\nu}}$?

In general relativity, when deriving the field equation using the variational principle we use $\hat{g}_{\mu\nu}=g_{\mu\nu}+\delta{g_{\mu\nu}}$. Does $\delta{g_{\mu\nu}}$ mean the measurement of how ...
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2answers
176 views

Why general relativity over other similar theories?

Since all theories where gravity is seen as a result of space curvature automatically satisfies the equivalence principle, why should one prefer GR over all other alternatives? Surely you can make the ...
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1answer
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Distance between two galaxies of different redshift

Let $Q_1$ and $Q_2$ two different objects in the Universe (we can think to two galaxies or quasars), that we observe from the Earth at different angular position $(\alpha_1,\delta_1)$, ...
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What is the status of the area theorem in AdS?

The area theorem, by Hawking (in "Gravitational Radiation from Colliding Black Holes", also found in Wald), states that the area of an event horizon cannot decrease with time. As I understand, there ...
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Does every particle in a neutron star accretion disc undergo Thomas precession?

Assuming, based on this wikipedia article Accretion Discs That accretion discs surrounding neutron stars are diffuse (I take this to mean they are composed of a gas and / or plasma). That the ...
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Why is the stress-energy tensor symmetric?

The relativistic stress-energy tensor $T$ is important in both special and general relativity. Why is it symmetric, with $T_{\mu\nu}=T_{\nu\mu}$? As a secondary question, how does this relate to the ...
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If the measurements of a clock above the earth depend on orientation, then what measurements are correct?

Take a clock in space above the earth (assuming a Schwarzchild spacetime) that works by relaying a light signal a small distance radially; ticking each time the light signal returns. Compare this to ...
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Special and general relativity and space time

I have a question. I'm reading The Elegant Universe and it's talking about the special and general theory of relativity. One of the things it mentions is that time and the three dimensions of space ...