The variables used in general relativity to describe the shape of spacetime. If your question is about metric units, use the tag "units", and/or "si-units" if it is about the SI system specifically.

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Orthogonality in curved space/spacetime

When are two vectors orthogonal in curved spacetime? From wikipedia: "In 2-D or higher-dimensional Euclidean space, two vectors are orthogonal if and only if their dot product is zero, i.e. they ...
10
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4answers
150 views

Difference between matrix representations of tensors and $\delta^{i}_{j}$ and $\delta_{ij}$?

My question basically is, is Kronecker delta $\delta_{ij}$ or $\delta^{i}_{j}$. Many tensor calculus books (including the one which I use) state it to be the latter, whereas I have also read many ...
4
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1answer
135 views

Non-stationary spacetime

What is an example for a spacetime that is non-stationary that is considered as a description of something in nature? So far all the spacetimes I encounted have always been stationary ...
3
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1answer
116 views

Solving electromagnetic vector field using the Lagrangian

Given an action of the form \begin{equation}S=-\frac{1}{4}\int d^4x\eta^{\mu\nu}\eta^{\lambda\rho}F_{\mu\lambda}F_{\nu\rho}\end{equation} where ...
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2answers
71 views

Minkowski metric and definition of coordinate differentials?

This is probably a really silly confusion I have about the definition of “coordinate differentials”, which I thought were things like $dx,dy,dz$ etc. The Minkowski line element ...
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0answers
43 views

Laplacian in 4 spatial dimensions; 4th dimension warped

How can I prove the form of the Laplacian in four spatial dimensions, using the identification $y = y + 2\pi R$ for the fourth dimension and assuming the others as the usual Cartesian ones? I want to ...
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4answers
1k views

Minkowski spacetime: Is there a signature (+,+,+,+)?

In history there was an attempt to reach (+, +, +, +) by replacing "ct" with "ict", still employed today in form of the "Wick rotation". Wick rotation supposes that time is imaginary. I wonder if ...
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4answers
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Why is the space-time interval squared?

The space-time interval equation is this: $$\Delta s^2=\Delta x^2+\Delta y^2+\Delta z^2-(c\Delta t)^2$$ Where, $\Delta x, \Delta y, \Delta z$ and $\Delta t$ represent the distances along various ...
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0answers
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Dirac equation in curved spacetime - found second derivatives of the metric, violation of the principle of equivalence?

I am working on the Dirac equation on curved spacetime. A Foldy-Wouthuysen transformation was applied to obtain the semiclassical limit of the equation to study the dynamics of the spin of the ...
2
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4answers
188 views

GR matter-free equations and Schwarzschild geometry

I am reading some lecture notes on General relativity (undergraduate level) and I do not understand a sequence of statements about the topics in the title. After stating that the for matter-free ...
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3answers
90 views

Metric signature conventions: minus sign for $x^a$ or $x_a$?

Say I use the metric signature $(-+++)$. Then $\partial_a=(\partial_0,\partial_i)=(-\partial^0,\partial^i)$, but $\partial^a=(\partial^0,\partial^i)=(-\partial_0,\partial_i)$. The same goes for $p^a$ ...
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2answers
56 views

Show that two families of curves are orthogonal (without using orthogonal trajectories)

I'm reading through Hartle's General Relativity and came across this question: Consider the following coordinate transformation from rectangular coordinates $(x,y)$, labeling points in the plane ...
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1answer
116 views

Calculate divergence of vector in curvilinear coordinates using the metric

In a curved $(3+1)$ dimensional spacetime with metric components $g_{\mu \nu}$, the covariant derivative of a $4$ vector $\mathbf V = (V^0, \vec V)$ is given by $$\nabla_\mu~ V^\mu = ...
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1answer
67 views

How to find solutions to the gravitational potential metric h

I'm working on a problem in which a star of mass M1, radius R1 is surrounded by a thin shell of mass M2, , radius R2. I want to find the solutions to the gravitational potential h in the region in ...
3
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1answer
195 views

Question on index notation and metric tensor

I found this expression in my SR notes: $$ (\Lambda^{-1})^{\lambda}_{\ \ \ \sigma} = g^{\lambda\mu}~\Lambda^{\rho}_{\ \ \ \mu} ~g_{\rho\sigma} = \Lambda_\sigma^{\ \ \ \lambda}$$ I know where it ...
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5answers
752 views

Minkowski Metric Signature

When I learned about the Minkowski Space and it's coordinates, it was explained such that the metric turns out to be $$ ds^{2} = -(cdx^{0})^{2} +(dx^{1})^{2} + (dx^{2})^{2} + (dx^{3})^{2} $$ where $ ...
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4answers
447 views

The Lagrangian as a metric

My question is, can the (classical) Lagrangian be thought of as a metric? That is, is there a meaningful sense in which we can think of the least-action path from the initial to the final ...
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0answers
43 views

Metric to describe an expanding spacetime from coordinates reflecting the perspective of a local observer

The FLRW metric describes the metric expansion of spacetime from the perspective of comoving coordinates. Given the way this metric is usually formulated, comoving distances stay constant, and the ...
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0answers
68 views

Why such hypersurface orthogonal vector leading to $g_{0i}=0$ for $i=1,2,3$?

Suppose that the hypersurface orthogonal co-vector $W$ us perpendicular to the family of hypersurface defined by a function $\varphi$ with $\varphi=constant$. If we choose a coordinate in which ...
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0answers
93 views

General formula to compute the redshift (first order perturbations)

Consider an expanding universe with the following metric in conformal time/co-moving coordinates: ...
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0answers
108 views

Covariant Derivative with a Torsion Free Metric

Where $\triangledown$ is the covariant derivative and we are to assume that the connection is torsion free (that is, we can exchange the lower indices of the connection coefficients), how can I prove ...
4
votes
1answer
173 views

Computing Curvature via Cartan Formalism

Given a metric $g_{\mu \nu}$, one can select an orthonormal basis $\omega^{\hat{a}}$ such that, $$ds^2= \omega^{\hat{t}}\otimes\omega^{\hat{t}} - \omega^{\hat{x}} \otimes \omega^{\hat{x}} - ...$$ By ...
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3answers
516 views

D'Alembertian for a scalar field

I have read that the D'Alembertian for a scalar field is $$ \Box = g^{\nu\mu}\nabla_\nu\nabla_\mu = \frac{1}{\sqrt{-g}}\partial_\mu (\sqrt{-g}\partial^\mu). $$ Exactly when is this correct? Only for ...
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4answers
157 views

How to determine “timelike”-ness without using a coordinate system?

It has been stated here that: we can say, without introducing a coordinate system, that the interval associated with two events is timelike, lightlike, or spacelike. This assertion appears at ...
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1answer
154 views

Stress-energy tensor explicitly in terms of the metric tensor

I am trying to write the Einstein field equations $$R_{\mu\nu}-\frac{1}{2}g_{\mu\nu} R=\frac{8\pi G}{c^4}T_{\mu\nu}$$ in such a way that the Ricci curvature tensor $R_{\mu\nu}$ and scalar curvature ...
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1answer
134 views

Hypersurface Normal

Could anyone explain why $$n^{a}n_{a}=\pm1$$ where $n^{a}$ is the normal to the hypersurface
4
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1answer
96 views

Setting $\delta R =0$ on boundary of hypersurface

Does requiring $\delta R=0$ on the boundary of hyper-surface create any restrictions or problems in deriving the field equations from Einstein-Hilbert Action?
4
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2answers
122 views

Getting the Lagrangian from the action in curved spacetime

Suppose I have this action: $$ S = \int \mathrm d^4 x\sqrt{-g}\times \text{something}$$ where $g$ is the determinant of the metric. Should I take the Lagrangian to be: $$ \mathcal L = \sqrt{-g} ...
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0answers
94 views

Curvature based derivation of Schwarzchild Metric

I'm a third year maths undergrad and I'm trying to find (and follow) a curvature based derivation of the Schwarzchild metric, if there exists such a proof?
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2answers
115 views

Inner products in relativity

In physics, the definition of a dot (inner) product is often between a vector (“contravariant vector”) and a covector (“covariant vector”). However, in mathematics, a dot product is always defined ...
2
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2answers
122 views

Affine connection notation

Can ${g}^{\mu\sigma}{\Gamma}^{\rho}_{\sigma\nu}$ be written as ${\Gamma}^{\mu\rho}_{\nu}$? If so how come this symbol never appears in any GR book?
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0answers
55 views

Contracting Indices in General relativity [duplicate]

I was reading a book about general relativity and I came across these two equations $$ \begin{align} \mathrm{g}^{\mu\nu}_{,\rho}+ \mathrm{g}^{\sigma\nu}{\Gamma}^{\mu}_{\sigma\rho}+ ...
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1answer
316 views

Contracting Indices

Does anyone know how to get from (1) to (2) in the system $$ \begin{align} \mathrm{g}^{\mu\nu}_{,\rho}+ \mathrm{g}^{\sigma\nu}{{\Gamma}}^{\mu}_{\sigma\rho}+ ...
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0answers
139 views

Understanding spherically symmetric metric

In these lecture notes the static isotropic metric is treated as follows (p. 71): Take a spherically symmetric, bounded, static distribution of matter, then we will have a spherically symmetric ...
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1answer
81 views

What do they mean with: photon scattering with $q^2=-Q^2\leq 0$

In a scattering problem, let q denote the four-momentum of the photon. Is $q^2=-Q^2\leq 0$ simply a statement of what metric one uses and simultaneously a definition of $Q^2$?
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1answer
72 views

Finding the components of the Riemannian tensor given the components of a metric

I am looking at a manifold of dimension $n$ (And I am considering a local co-ordinates system $x_1,x_2,\ldots x_n$) and the metric defined by the components $g_{ij} = \frac{\delta_{ij}}{x_1^2}$. I'm ...
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0answers
79 views

Ricci scalar higher dimensions

I was wondering if there is a straightforward way to compute the Ricci curvature of a metric that has the form (à la Kaluza-Klein): $g_{MM}\equiv\begin{pmatrix}g_{\mu\nu}&g_{\mu ...
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0answers
147 views

Squashed 3-sphere?

What is a squashed 3-sphere? In context of quantum gravity. I stumbled upon a term 'squashed 7 sphere' but that's concerning supersymmetry. Is it just normal 3-sphere metric, that is just 'squashed' ...
2
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1answer
116 views

Why are there two metric signature conventions?

I understand that it is more common in GR for the metric to be given a $(-,+,+,+)$ signature and more common in particle physics (or field theory, as Peskin & Schroeder tells me) to use the ...
0
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1answer
65 views

One particle near two Schwarzschild black holes

I have a particle near two Schwarzschild black holes. Let the black holes remain at rest so that only the particle is moving for the observer. We are in a plane. I calculate the distance travelled by ...
2
votes
1answer
280 views

Variation of modified Einstein Hilbert Action

In general relativity one can derive the Einstein Field Equations by the principle of least action through variations with respect to the inverse of the metric tensor. In some modified theories of ...
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0answers
69 views

The time dilation in an oscillating elevator

Suppose you are in an elevator which oscillates vertically with a frequency $\nu$. How will we find the time dilation in this oscillating reference frame ? If the lift is accelerating upward or ...
3
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1answer
137 views

Schwarzschild geodesics

I've found on Wikipedia that energy $E$ and angular momentum $L$ of a particle are conserved quantities in Schwarzschild metric. It's written: $$L=mr^2 \frac {d\phi} {d\tau},$$ ...
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4answers
204 views

Space-like and time-like: where do the names come from?

Space-like separated events are events that, in a well-chosen reference frame, can take place at the same time but never happen at the same location. On the other hand for time-like events, one can ...
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0answers
80 views

What is the physical meaning of the Eddington - Finkelstein metric?

I want to see a some physical process (experimental) that could explain the many transformations of coordinates into this mathematical procedure. (really two transformations, but i think that is a ...
4
votes
1answer
115 views

Extent of coordinate freedom to set metric components along a spacetime path

If we describe spacetime with a Lorentzian manifold, it is always possible to choose a coordinate system such that at any particular point $x^\alpha$, the components of the metric are: $$ ...
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3answers
155 views

Can General Relativity Metric Tensor be independent of a particular co-ordinate index in a local area?

For example in a particular local area, can the metric tensor be totally independent of $z$ co-ordinate in $(t,x,y,z)$ co-ordinate system? This way the distance function will not contain $z$ ...
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1answer
127 views

How to prove that zero Weyl tensor predicts no deflection of light?

There is Nordstrom theory, which can be given as $$ C_{\mu \nu \alpha \beta} = 0. $$ The solution of Einstein equations for this case is conformally flat metric: $$ g^{\mu \nu} = e^{\epsilon \varphi ...
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2answers
190 views

Metric Expansion Of Space

I just do not understand this concept of metric expansion of space. Shouldn't the galaxies move away from each other. How can the space between them expand if the galaxies are not moving away from ...
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0answers
44 views

Allowed transformations in General Relativity [duplicate]

So in Special Relativity we have: $$ \Lambda \eta \Lambda^T=\eta $$ Is there an analagous formula for the metric in General Relativity?