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0
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1answer
383 views

Contraction of the metric tensor

This is perhaps a simple tensor calculus problem -- but I just can't see why... I have notes (in GR) that contains a proof of the statement In space of constant sectional curvature, $K$ is ...
0
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1answer
48 views

Zero-zero (lower indicies) term for affine connection ($\Gamma_{00}^\lambda$), why do some terms dissapear?

More simply a tensor algebra question, but in General relativity I have the following when I calculate $\Gamma_{00}^\lambda$:- $$ \Gamma_{00}^\lambda = \frac{1}{2}g^{\nu\lambda}\left( \frac{\partial ...
2
votes
1answer
481 views

Ricci identity/Riemann curvature tensor and covectors

Can somebody please explain to me how the following statement is true? The Riemann curvature tensor $R^c_{dab}$ is given by the Ricci identity $$(\nabla_a\nabla_b-\nabla_b\nabla_a)V^c\equiv ...
4
votes
2answers
201 views

Difference between slanted indices on a tensor

In my class, there is no distinction made between, $$ C_{ab}{}^{b} $$ and $$ C^{b}{}_{ab}. $$ All I know, and read about so far, is the distinction of covariant and contravariant, form/vector, etc. ...
0
votes
0answers
297 views

covarient derivative of electromagnetic field tensor

I'm trying to prove the energy momentum tensor in curved spacetime for Electromagnetic field is Divergence-less directly(Without using general lie derivative method which can prove any energy momentum ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Pauli matrices and the Levi-Civita symbol

This is just a quick question. I would figure this out myself if I wouldn't have an exam about this tomorrow. I am working on the non-relativistic approximation of the Dirac equation for an electron ...
2
votes
1answer
107 views

Non-diagonal elements when switching metric signature?

Considering a metric tensor with the signature $(-,+,+,+)$: $g_{\mu\nu}= \begin{pmatrix} -c^2 & g_{01} & g_{02} & g_{03}\\ g_{10} & a^2 & g_{12} & g_{13}\\ g_{20} & g_{21} ...
0
votes
2answers
139 views

Weinberg's proof that Levi-Civita Symbol is a tensor

In Gravitation and Cosmology, S.Weinberg states the following: $$\Lambda_{\epsilon}^{\alpha}\Lambda_{\zeta}^{\beta}\Lambda_{\kappa}^{\gamma}\Lambda_{\lambda}^{\delta}\epsilon^{\epsilon \zeta \kappa ...
0
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2answers
126 views

A tensor summation question

With the definition of the tensor: \begin{equation} J_{ij} = I_{ij} - \tfrac{1}{3}\delta_{ij}I^{k}_{k}, \qquad i,j,k\in\{1,2,3\}, \end{equation} I have seen the quantity: \begin{equation} ...
3
votes
2answers
219 views

Differential Forms and Densities

I've heard that differential forms are related to densities, however I'm still a little confused about that. I thought on the case of charge density and I came to that: let $U\subset\mathbb{R}^3$ be a ...
1
vote
1answer
308 views

Question about contraction with metric tensor

I just starting to study GR and I could not prove the following: if I have to tensors $T_{\mu\nu}$ and $Q_{\mu\nu}$ such that $T_{\mu\nu}=Q_{\mu\nu}$, why can I multiply both sides of the equation by ...
1
vote
2answers
366 views

What is the Riemann curvature tensor contracted with the metric tensor?

Can the Ricci curvature tensor be obtained by a 'double contraction' of the Riemann curvature tensor? For example $R_{\mu\nu}=g^{\sigma\rho}R_{\sigma\mu\rho\nu}$.
0
votes
3answers
403 views

Relativistic basic question - four vector, Lorentz matrix

I have heard relativistics only very compressed during my student time. Now I looked up the definitions again and a question comes into my mind: A contravariant vector is transformed like this: ...
1
vote
1answer
298 views

Covariant derivative with upper index

I just need clarification, that is, to see that I'm doing the right thing. When calculating central charge for certain metric, I need to solve an integral that contains Lie brackets etc. And I have ...
9
votes
3answers
3k views

Why is the covariant derivative of the metric tensor zero?

I've consulted several books for the explanation of why $$\nabla _{\mu}g_{\alpha \beta} = 0,$$ and hence derive the relation between metric tensor and affine connection $\Gamma ^{\sigma}_{\mu ...
2
votes
1answer
297 views

Tensor Introduction

I have recently started learning about tensors during my course on Special Relativity. I am struggling to gain an intuitive idea for invariant, contravariant and covariant quantities. In my book, ...
11
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2answers
909 views

Can any rank tensor be decomposed into symmetric and anti-symmetric parts?

I know that rank 2 tensors can be decomposed as such. But I would like to know if this is possible for any rank tensors?
2
votes
1answer
54 views

Testing covariance of an expression?

This is something I've been unsure of for a while but still don't quite get. How does one tell whether an expression (e.g. the Dirac equation) is covariant or not? I get it for a single tensor, but ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

Writing a tensor with respect to a particular basis

When defining tensors as multilinear maps, I am having trouble understanding why a tensor, let's say of type (2,1), can be written in the following way: $$T = T^{\mu\nu}_{\rho} e_\mu \otimes e_\nu ...
1
vote
1answer
290 views

Tensors: relations between physics and linear algebra

In continuum mechanics we use finite deformation tensors to exprime deformations in a point. The 9 components of the tensor (in reality 6 because of its symmetry) are defined as $$ ...
6
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4answers
694 views

Are covariant vectors representable as row vectors and contravariant as column vectors

I would like to know what are the range of validity of the following statement: Covariant vectors are representable as row vectors. Contravariant vectors are representable as column vectors. ...
10
votes
3answers
2k views

What does the dual of a tensor mean (e.g. dual stress tensor in relativistic ED)?

I know what the dual of a vector means (as a map to its field), and I am also aware of of the definition a dual of a tensor as, $$F^{*ij} = \frac{1}{2} \epsilon^{ijkl} F_{kl}\tag{1}$$ I just don't ...
4
votes
1answer
982 views

Covariant derivative and Leibniz rule

I read the Wikipedia page about the covariant derivative, my main problem is in this part: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Covariant_derivative#Coordinate_description Some of the formulas seem to lead ...
12
votes
6answers
2k views

What is a tensor?

I have a pretty good knowledge of physics but couldn't understand what a tensor is. I just couldn't understand it, and the wiki page is very hard to understand as well. Can someone refer me to a good ...
1
vote
0answers
122 views

How to integrate twice of this viscous term?

I am reading a paper, and I do not understand why the author said the following term when integrated twice will become, $\int\limits_\Omega {{\rm{d}}\Omega {{\bf{\psi }}^{\bf{u}}}\cdot\nabla ...
0
votes
1answer
118 views

Positive Permutation Tensor

I have seen that one can make an operator with $$ L^i=\epsilon^{ijk}x_{j}\partial_{k} $$ But what if I want to make instead items that are sums, instead of differences. For instance ...
1
vote
1answer
72 views

true three index tensors

is such a tensor, $T_{\alpha\beta\, \gamma}$, possible such that $$T_{\alpha\beta\, \gamma}=T_{\beta\alpha\, \gamma}=-T_{\alpha\gamma\, \beta}=-T_{\gamma\beta\, \alpha}$$ That is, symmetric under two ...
1
vote
1answer
681 views

metric signature explanation

Can anyone explain what metric signature is? I have a basic knowledge regarding tensors, btw. Also, how is it related to fundamental understanding of general relativity? Thanks.
0
votes
0answers
80 views

How do I write the energy of a constant, uniform 2D charge distribution?

Let's consider a 2D electromagnetic field defined in a square domain $[0,\Lambda]^2$, with periodic boundary conditions, with a constant charge distribution, uniform all over the aforementioned ...
1
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2answers
313 views

Question with Einstein notation

Let’s consider this equation for a scalar quantity $f$ as a function of a 3D vector $a$ as: $$ f(\vec a) = S_{ijkk} a_i a_j $$ where $S$ is a tensor of rank 4. Now, I’m not sure what to make of the ...
0
votes
1answer
3k views

Conversion of motion equation from Cartesian to Polar coordinates: Is covariant differentiation necessary?

I have earlier posted the same question here on math stackexchange but without any answer. As the question concerns tensors, I guess that I have come to the right ...
2
votes
1answer
137 views

Question from Schutz's

In q. 22 in page 141, I am asked to show that if $U^{\alpha}\nabla_{\alpha} V^{\beta} = W^{\beta}$, then $U^{\alpha}\nabla_{\alpha}V_{\beta}=W_{\beta}$. Here's what I have done: $V_{\beta}=g_{\beta ...
2
votes
1answer
137 views

Are there any clear and expressive plainword sense of metric tensor components?

Can the following groups of components of metric tensor can assigned a clear sense? https://docs.google.com/drawings/pub?id=1kVqkN1gT-a2fDy2S851l9iQKaMfaatCDo517OSZBHEo&w=467&h=228 I have ...
4
votes
1answer
83 views

Spatial and polarizing beam splitters in a graphical calculus

Suppose I have four wires, and I tensor product them together $A \otimes B \otimes C \otimes D$ I pass $A \otimes B$ through a spatial beam splitter $Spl: A \otimes B \rightarrow A^\prime \otimes ...
26
votes
4answers
6k views

Are matrices and second rank tensors the same thing?

Tensors are mathematical objects that are needed in physics to define certain quantities. I have a couple of questions regarding them that need to be clarified: Are matrices and second rank tensors ...
2
votes
1answer
265 views

Is there symmetry in 2d stress tensor in linear elastic fracture mechanics?

Assumptions: Cross terms in strain tensor are defined as equal $\varepsilon_{xy} = \varepsilon_{yx}$. pure mode I crack. Far from crack tip, material is purely elastic and we are way below yield ...
7
votes
2answers
138 views

Torsion and gauge invariant EM kinetic term

Everytime I hear about adding torsion to GR, something struggles me: how do you create a kinetic term for the electromagnetic field that is still gauge-invariant? One of the consequences of torsion is ...
0
votes
3answers
527 views

Need some basic help with notation and the Christoffel symbols

Apologies in advance if some of the questions below seem overly simple. In an introductory GR book, I find the following expression for the autoparallel of the affine connection (the upper bound of ...
0
votes
1answer
178 views

Determine the tensor of contraint and deformation of a cube under compression

We have a cube under compression with dimension l1*l2*l3, is put between 2 rigid plates in the axis 1 (two plates block the deformation of the cube in thí axis), the cube is also put on a rigid plate, ...
17
votes
3answers
2k views

Irreducible tensors concept

This might be a little naive question, but I am having difficulty grasping the concept of irreducible tensors. Particularly, why do we decompose tensors into symmetric and anti-symmetric parts? I have ...
3
votes
2answers
473 views

What is the mathematical formulation for buckling?

Argument: Buckling is an engineering concept that can only be applied to thin columns with compressive loading. (Is it possible to) Prove the above sentence right or wrong with mathematical ...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

What is the covariant derivative in mathematician's language?

In mathematics, we talk about tangent vectors and cotangent vectors on a manifold at each point, and vector fields and cotangent vector fields (also known as differential one-forms). When we talk ...
3
votes
0answers
363 views

I lost a factor of two in the electromagnetic field tensor

I apologize for this simple question, but I lost a factor of 2 and can't find it anymore, so now I'm looking on the internet, perhaps one of you has some information about its whereabouts. :-) ...
14
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4answers
2k views

History of Electromagnetic Field Tensor

I'm curious to learn how people discovered that electric and magnetic fields could be nicely put into one simple tensor. It's clear that the tensor provides many beautiful simplifications to the ...
1
vote
2answers
547 views

What kind of invariants are proper time and proper length?

Under the Lorentz transformations, quantities are classed as four-vectors, Lorentz scalars etc depending upon how their measurement in one coordinate system transforms as a measurement in another ...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

What is the physical meaning of the connection and the curvature tensor?

Regarding general relativity: What is the physical meaning of the Christoffel symbol ($\Gamma^i_{\ jk}$)? What are the (preferably physical) differences between the Riemann curvature tensor ($R^i_{\ ...