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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Volume form of the AdS_{4} Space

Regarding the unit radius $AdS_{4}$ space, the metric in global coordinates, is given by: $$ds^{2}_{AdS_{4}}=\frac{1}{\cos^{2}{\rho}}[dt^{2}-d\rho^{2}-\sin^{2}\rho d\Omega_{2}^{2}]$$ where $$d\...
80
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1answer
5k views

Is there such thing as imaginary time dilation?

When I was doing research on General Relativity, I found Einstein's equation for Gravitational Time Dilation. I discovered that when you plugged in a large enough value for $M$ (around $10^{19}$ ...
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2answers
82 views

Straight line null geodesics in Minkowski, De Sitter and Schwarzschild

I'm trying to understand which part of the following metric determines whether photons travel on a "straight" line (thinking of $(t,r,\theta,\phi)$ as a flat background), the metric I'm considering is:...
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Gravitational lensing and cosmic strings

Say we have a straight cosmic string lying along the $z$-axis, with energy-momentum tensor $$T_{\mu\nu}=\mu\delta(x)\delta(y)\operatorname{diag}(1,0,0,-1)\tag{1}\label{1}$$ for some small positive ...
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2answers
51 views

Motivation for usage of 4-vectors in special relativity

I understand that if one considers a 4-dimensional space-time from the outset then 4-vectors are the natural quantities to consider (as opposed to 3-vectors as in Newtonian mechanics), since the ...
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1answer
80 views

Homogeneity and isotropy and derivation of the Lorentz transformations

In deriving the Lorentz transformations I have found (from reading a few different sets lecture notes) that it is argued that they must be linear and thus there general form must be $$x'=Ax+Bt,\quad t'...
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0answers
31 views

Inertial coordinate systems [duplicate]

In Newtonian mechanics, by the following two assumptions: (i) The time is absolute. (ii) The length is absolute. it is easy find the relations betweem two coordinate systems with uniform motion ...
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2answers
76 views

Definition of the Lorentz transformations [closed]

Until very recently I believed that the Lorentz transformations were defined as "the transformations that carry one inertial reference frame into another". In Wikipedia's page we find something along ...
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1answer
57 views

Questions about null geodesic [closed]

Show for the null geodesic in 3D flat spacetime using polar coordinates so the line element is $ds^2=-dt^2+dr^2+r^2d\phi^2$. Do light rays move on straight lines? My question is that I only learned ...
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0answers
36 views

Interpreting meaning of coordinates given a metric

I was working problem 3.6 in Carroll's GR textbook and was given the following metric, which is a good approximation to the metric outside the surface of the Earth. $ds^2=-(1+2 \Phi(r))dt^2 + (...
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4answers
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How do we know the Schwarzschild solution contains an object of mass $M$?

The Schwarzschild metric is $$ds^2 = - \left( 1 - \frac{2GM}{r} \right) dt^2 + \left(1-\frac{2GM}{r}\right)^{-1} dr^2 + r^2 d\Omega^2.$$ In Carroll's GR book, it is claimed that $M$ is the mass of the ...
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What manifold is spacetime?

In General Relativity, spacetime is a $4$-dimensional manifold with one Lorentzian metric tensor defined on it. In the Special Relativity case what manifold is spacetime is quite clear: it is ...
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31 views

Geodesic tangent vector in a Riemannian 4-space

I am doing a question in Lewis Ryder's introduction to General relativity. I am very close to the answer but not quite there. The question is: A Riemannian 4-space has metric $$ds^2 = e^{2\...
3
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1answer
52 views

Is this equation $\nabla_a\sqrt{-g}=0$ correct? [duplicate]

Is the equation $$\nabla_a\sqrt{-g}=0$$ correct? Here $\nabla_a$ is the Levi-Civita connection, and $g$ is the determinant of metric $g_{ab}$. Apparently, we have $\nabla_ag_{bc}=0$, but I am not sure ...
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1answer
34 views

Conformal Transformation: Minkowski sheet to cylinder

What conformal transformation can I make to 2d Minkowski with metric $ds^2=-dt^2+dx^2$ to show that it is conformal to a cylinder?
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0answers
33 views

What is the Metric Tensor? [duplicate]

I was studying Einstein's Field Equation, and this was the most common symbol. Can you explain what it is and how it could be used?
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1answer
311 views

Null geodesics in uniform gravitational field metric

I'm trying to understand the null geodesics in the metric: $$\mathrm{d}s^2 = -(1+gz)^2 \mathrm{d}t^2 + \mathrm{d}z^2 + \mathrm{d}x^2$$ In particular I'm wondering if the following intuition is valid:...
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1answer
50 views

Orthogonal of tangent vector in Rindler coordinates [closed]

For 2D space time from $(t,x)$ to $(u,v)$ the transformation are $$t = u \sinh(v)$$$$x=u\cosh(v)$$ Asking to show that two families of curves $u = \textrm{constant}$ and $v = \textrm{constant}$ ...
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2answers
146 views

Why is the covariant derivative of the determinant of the metric zero?

This question, metric determinant and its partial and covariant derivative, seems to indicate $$\nabla_a \sqrt{g}=0.$$ Why is this the case? I've always learned that $$\nabla_a f= \partial_a f,$$ ...
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1answer
65 views

Straight lines in general relativity

This question stems from a possibly misguided attempt to understand General Relativity. I am about to leave High school for college, I do however have a rudimentary understanding of tensors, and I ...
3
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1answer
132 views

Diffeomorphism invariance and geodesic action

I'm trying to understand the role of diffeomorphism and isometry invariance in the geodesic action in GR: $$ S = \int_{\tau_1}^{\tau_2} \! d\tau~ g_{ab}(x(\tau)) \frac{dx^a}{d\tau} \frac{dx^a}{d\tau} ...
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1answer
160 views

Can special relativity be derived from the invariance of the interval?

As far as I know, the classical approach to special relativity is to take Einstein's postulates as the starting point of the logical sequence, then to derive the Lorentz transformations from them, and ...
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1answer
147 views

Acceleration of particle “held in place” at $x = 1$ [closed]

The metric components in a two-dimensional spacetime are given in terms of the coordinates $(t, x)$ by$$ds^2 = -\cosh x\,dt^2 + dx^2.$$Consider a particle that is "held in position" at $x = 1$. What ...
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4answers
192 views

Distance in General relativity

I read a few lines about general relativity and one of the first equations is the one defining the eigentime of a time - like curve. But observers should also be able to measure length, right? So is ...
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0answers
50 views

Gauge invariance in gravitational field

I have read that the linearized equation for the metric fluctuations $h_{\mu\nu}$, namely: $$ \partial^2h^{\mu\nu}-\partial_{\alpha}(\partial^{\mu}h^{\nu\alpha}+\partial^{\nu}h^{\mu\alpha}) +\partial^...
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1answer
30 views

Deriving Electromagnetism energy-stress tensor in GR [closed]

Please find the mistake in the following calculations. We have $L=-F^{\mu\nu}F_{\mu\nu}$, and try to derive the energy-stress tensor using $\delta(-g)^{1/2}=\frac{1}{2}(-g)^{1/2}g^{\mu\nu}\delta g_{\...
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2answers
62 views

Wald's General Relativity, section 6.3 Page 144

I cannot understand how he reaches the conclusion in equation 6.3.36 and 6.3.37; even the terminology is somewhat confusing. This is a problem of bending of light under gravitational field. This is ...
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1answer
56 views

Classical Limit of Schwarzschild Metric

The orbit of a test particle orbiting a black hole can be described by the Lagrangian $$\mathcal{L} = -\frac{1}{2}\left(-\left(1-\frac{2 G m}{c^2 r}\right) \dot{t}^2 + \left(1-\frac{2 G m}{c^2 r}\...
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0answers
53 views

Finding an explicit expression for inverse of Lorentz transformation ${\Lambda^\mu}_{\nu}$

I'm studying in a module titled "Symmetries and Action Principles in Physics." I'm having a small trouble with the notation, I think, of special relativity. We have in the text In fact we may ...
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1answer
66 views

Scalar fields in AdS$_3$

I'm looking at lecture notes on AdS/CFT by Jared Kaplan, and in section 4.2 he claims that the action for a free scalar field in AdS$_3$ is $$S=\int dt d\rho d\theta \dfrac{\sin\rho}{\cos\rho}\dfrac{1}...
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0answers
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Gibbons-Hawking-York boundary term expanded at second order in the fluctuation

Does anyone know a general form for the Gibbons-Hawking-York boundary term expanded at quadratic order in the fluctuation of the metric? Assume to define the fluctuation of the metric $g_{\mu \nu}$ ...
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2answers
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Maxwell's equations from differential forms

I found the following in some lecture notes I took some time ago: $$ \mathbf{E}=-\text{grad}\Phi-\partial_t\mathbf{A}\\ \mathbf{B}=\mathrm{rot}\mathbf{A} $$ These are the electromagnetic fields ...
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2answers
39 views

Curvy space in and around massive objects [closed]

If space curves around massive objects, what happens to the space within the massive objects?
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2answers
85 views

What's the metric of the Standard Non-Time-Orientable Spacetime

If you've read any spacetime topology, you know that spacetime. It is the amazing rotating lightcone identified after half a rotation. And outside of De Sitter space with some identifications, it is ...
4
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1answer
78 views

Negative mass thin shell collapse

Suppose we have a collapsing light-like (ingoing) shell with negative mass and decreasing further. The shell is radiating and so the exterior region is that of the outgoing Vaidya solution. $$ds^2 = -...
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0answers
62 views

Conformal infinity in the Hawking-Hunter-Taylor-Robinson metric

I have been trying to follow some of the computations of this paper: http://arxiv.org/abs/hep-th/0408217 and particularly I couldn't derive the asymptotic form of the Kerr-AdS background (3.27) using ...
4
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0answers
63 views

Why are generators defined oppositely in Weinberg's vs. Maggiore's QFT books?

I've been confused about the sign conventions used in Weinberg's QFT book for a long time. Here's my question: The generators $J^{\mu\nu}$ are defined in this book as $$U(1+\omega)=1+\frac{i}{2}\...
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1answer
133 views

Is every solution of Einstein field equations unique?

Einstein's equation is $$8 \pi T_{ab} = G_{ab},$$ where the left side contains the stress-energy tensor and the right side contains the Einstein tensor. Is there exactly one unique stress-energy ...
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64 views

What is the metric at the center of a star? [duplicate]

If there is only one star in the universe then is the metric at the center of the star flat?
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2answers
80 views

What are world lines as opposed to arbitrary curves in spacetime?

In GR the spacetime manifold is equipped with a metric which makes it a Lorentzian manifold. It is the metric that is doing the separation of space and time (so that we end up with three dimensions of ...
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0answers
41 views

Could a 3+1 space be embedded in a 4+1 space and retain its 3+1 characteristics? [closed]

I'm confused because I can conceptualize this embedding scenario in two seemingly incompatible ways. Which of the following scenarios are possible?: 1) 4+1 space automatically enforces 4 dimensions ...
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2answers
48 views

Why is 90 degrees the standard for independence in vectors? [closed]

Why do so many laws and ideas in physics act separately if they are separated by 90 degrees? Say you have a force in one direction, x. You can't add a force within 0-90 degrees without changing the ...
3
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1answer
157 views

Fermi-Propagated Jacobi equation in the book The Large scale structure of space-time

On page 81, equation (4.6), the author use the Fermi derivative to write the Jacobi equation \begin{equation} \tag{4.6} \frac{{D^2}_\text{F}}{\partial s^2} {}_{\bot}Z^a = -{R^a}_{bcd}{}_{\bot}Z^cV^bV^...
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2answers
133 views

(Hyper)Surface of Simultaneity

How can I determine the surfaces of simultaneity if I know the metric? In particular, what are the surfaces of simultaneity for rotating disk with Langevin metric: $$ ds^2=-(1-\omega^2r^2)dt^2+2r^2\...
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1answer
101 views

The Lie derivative of the metric $g_{ab}$ and index notation

I don't quite know where to start this question. I'm essentially not understanding how to compute the Lie derivative of a given metric and vector. So I have the following definition: $$ \left(\...
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1answer
171 views

Jacobi equation in the book The Large scale structure of space-time

On pp. 79, it is obvious that equation (4.2) \begin{equation} \frac{D}{\partial s}Z^a = {V^a}_{;\ b}Z^b \end{equation} holds, where $Z$ is the deviation vector and $V$ is the unit tangent vector along ...
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1answer
55 views

Why is the spatial term for contravariant 4-gradient negative, whereas for other 4-vectors it is the covariant part that is negative spatially?

The contravariant 4-displacement is: $${x}^{\alpha} = (ct,\mathbf{r})$$ And the contravariant 4-gradient is: $${\partial}^{\alpha} = (\frac{1}{c}\frac{\partial}{\partial{t}},-\nabla)$$ From what I ...
2
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1answer
75 views

A question regarding $f(R)$ Lagrangians

Consider the class of Lagrangian known as $f(R)$ Lagrangians where the Lagrangian is some function $f(R)$, \begin{equation} S=\int\sqrt{g}d^4x\ f(R) \end{equation} assuming there are no (or ignoring)...
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1answer
44 views

Ordering of Contravariant and Covariant spinors. Understanding the spinor space

I've been referring to Pg.36-Pg.38 in Introduction to Supersymmetry by Wiedamann. For understanding the precise origin of dotted, undotted indices on Spinors. He starts off my saying that $M$ acts on $...
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2answers
97 views

Standing wave on a circle [closed]

Suppose that we have a standing wave on a circle. I heard that by gradually increasing the radius of the circle, the wavelength will also increase to keep the standing wave. Is it right? If yes, what'...