Questions tagged [equivalence-principle]

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22
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8answers
17k views

Would it help if you jump inside a free falling elevator?

Imagine you're trapped inside a free falling elevator. Would you decrease your impact impulse by jumping during the fall? When?
54
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10answers
35k views

Why does a free-falling body experience no force despite accelerating?

Note: For the purposes of my question, when I refer to free fall assume it takes place in a vacuum. From my (admittedly weak) understanding of the equivalence principle, falling in a gravitational ...
7
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5answers
759 views

Taking selfies while falling, would you be able to notice a horizon before hitting a singularity?

I am generally interested in the role of "pings"(0a) between participants (a.k.a. "signal roundtrips"(0b), as familiar for instance from Synge's "five point curvature detector") in the determination ...
1
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1answer
2k views

Weightlessness for astronauts

Well, this question has been puzzling me for kinda long time, many people believe that orbiting astronauts feel weightless because they are "beyond the pull of Earth's gravity"...How far from the ...
23
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4answers
7k views

Is there a fundamental reason why gravitational mass is the same as inertial mass?

The principle of equivalence - that, locally, you can't distinguish between a uniform gravitational field and a non-inertial frame accelerating in the sense opposite to the gravitational field - is ...
28
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6answers
6k views

Why do objects follow geodesics in spacetime?

Trying to teach myself general relativity. I sort of understand the derivation of the geodesic equation $$\frac{d^{2}x^{\alpha}}{d\tau^{2}}+\Gamma_{\gamma\beta}^{\alpha}\frac{dx^{\beta}}{d\tau}\frac{...
42
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4answers
3k views

Does quantum mechanics violate the equivalence principle?

I have a question about equivalence principle in quantum mechanics. Consider a Schroedinger equation under gravitional field $$\left[ - \frac{1}{2m_I} \nabla^2 + m_g \Phi_{\mathrm{grav}} \right]\psi ...
15
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2answers
2k views

How (or why) equivalence principle led to Einstein field equations?

If equivalence principle was origin of general relativity what was the process that this principle led Einstein to developed his theory of general relativity?
6
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8answers
3k views

Surely space-time Curvature does not explain gravity, it just describe its effects?

In special relativity co-moving objects see the other's 4-velocity as being only temporal. When they move relative to each other they see the other's 4-velocity has rotated so that it points less in ...
5
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2answers
1k views

Curved space-time VS change of coordinates in Minkowski space

I'm looking for a rather intuitive explanation (or some references) of the difference between the metric of a curved space-time and the metric of non-inertial frames. Consider an inertial reference ...
5
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5answers
1k views

How are the comoving coordinates NOT a prefered reference frame?

Physics me this: The equivalence principle has rigorous physical definitions that say, for one, that the laws of physics are the same in all inertial reference frames. This is to say that the ...
8
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4answers
5k views

Why is the equivalence principle so important to general relativity?

In its simplest form, equivalence principle states that the inertial mass and the gravitational mass should be the same. This is easy to understand. But why is it so important to the formulation of ...
8
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1answer
1k views

Difference between Fermi and Riemann normal coordinates

What is the difference between Fermi normal coordinates and Riemann normal coordinates? Which one of them is related to the vanishing of the Christoffel symbols?
4
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2answers
463 views

Understanding the different kinds of mass in gravity

On this site, the Phys.SE question Is there a fundamental reason why gravitational mass is the same as inertial mass? has been asked. See also this Phys.SE question. The 'answer' provided on this ...
3
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9answers
3k views

How does this thought experiment not rule out black holes?

How does the following brief thought experiment fail to show that general relativity (GR) has a major problem in regards to black holes? The full thought experiment is in my blog post. The post ...
5
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2answers
3k views

When objects fall along geodesic paths of curved space-time, why is there no force acting on them?

On cseligman.com, it is written that So, we see things falling with an acceleration which we call the acceleration of gravity,and thinking that we live in a straight line , uniformly moving or ...
8
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3answers
2k views

Active gravitational mass of the electron

In PSE here electrons are added to a sphere and gravitational modifications are expected. My question is: Is there any experiment that show that a negatively charged object is source of a stronger ...
4
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1answer
1k views

How does Newton's 2nd law correspond to GR in the weak field limit?

I can only perform the demonstration from the much simpler $E = mc^2$. Take as given the Einstein field equation: $G_{\mu\nu} = 8 \pi \, T_{\mu\nu}$ ... can it be proved that Newton's formulation ...
3
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5answers
593 views

Equivalence principle question

I understand the equivalence principle as "The physics in a freely-falling small laboratory is that of special relativity (SR)." But I'm not quite sure why this is equivalent to "One cannot tell ...
2
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1answer
80 views

EM wave generation from different frames of reference

Take 2 observers and a charged particle, Observer S is stationary to the particle and sees the electric field and no magnetic field as he is stationary to the particle. Observer A decides to ...
8
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2answers
2k views

Does the equivalence between inertial and gravitational mass imply anything about the Higgs mechanism?

For example: the role it might play in a theory of quantum gravity (ie causing space-time curvature)? I realize that inertial mass can result from binding energy alone. Has the equivalence principle ...
2
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3answers
428 views

Why can't we think of free fall as upside down rocket?

/\ / \ | | | m | | | ------ <--- floor (Rocket A) This rocket is accelerated (g) upwards then mass(m) falls on the floor. ...
1
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1answer
238 views

Equivalence principle for test fields

My question is very simple. We all know that, for a test particle(classical) in a gravitational field, the motion is only determined by the geodesic lines(let's forget about the initial conditions for ...
11
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6answers
699 views

Charged particle as observed from an inertial and a non-inertial frame of reference

A charged particle fixed to a frame $S^\prime$ is accelerating w.r.t an inertial frame $S$. For an observer A in the $S$ frame, the charged particle is accelerating (being attached to frame $S^\prime$)...
9
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8answers
1k views

Gravity theories with the equivalence principle but different from GR

Einstein's general relativity assumes the equivalence of acceleration and gravitation. Is there a general class of gravity theories that have this property but disagree with general relativity? Will ...
7
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2answers
402 views

Equivalence principle and the meaning of the coordinate speed of light

Short version: Does the equivalence principle give us a means to tell if variations in the coordinate speed of light have absolute or only relative significance? Background In general relativity ...
6
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0answers
407 views

Auto-parallel Transport or Principle of Extremum Action?

In an affinely connected spacetime with a metric compatible connection, the equation of the curve in which the tangent vector at each point is the result of the parallel transport of every tangent ...
5
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1answer
246 views

Explanation for “if all accelerated systems are equivalent, then Euclidean geometry cannot hold in all of them”

I'm doing an EPQ (mini college research paper) on gravity, and I found a site that explained things in simple terms. I am having trouble understanding how Einstein came to his revelation space-time ...
12
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4answers
7k views

Water pressure in free fall

The increasing water pressure as you go deeper is generally explained in terms of the weight of the water column above the observation point pressing down. The question, then, is what would happen if ...
2
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2answers
496 views

Does GR imply a fundamental difference between gravitational and non-gravitational acceleration?

Does the equivalence principle imply that there is some fundamental difference between acceleration due to gravity and acceleration by other means (because there is no way to 'feel' free fall ...
7
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2answers
772 views

Equivalence principle and radiation from falling particle

I am currently having a hard time solving a problem of GR from Lasenby's book. I can't make it more clear than by quoting the exercise: 7.2 A charged object held stationary in a laboratory on the ...
5
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2answers
422 views

Shouldn't Torsion be eliminated on the basis of Equivalence Principle?

An affinely connected spacetime with a metric compatible connection can, in principle, have a non-vanishing anti-symmetric part; where the definition of the connection is given by defining parallel ...
5
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2answers
955 views

Time dilation in a gravitational field and the equivalence principle

A clock near the surface of the earth will run slower than one on the top of the mountain. If the equivalence principal tells us that being at rest in a gravitational field is equivalent to being in ...
3
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3answers
32k views

I think I am misunderstanding Einstein's equivalence principle and his elevator

I'm having difficulties understanding why a gravitational acceleration can be guaranteed to be locally equivalent to an accelerating frame. Doesn't it matter on how the force is being applied? If the ...
2
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1answer
2k views

How exactly and WHY does matter affect space-time? [closed]

According to general relativity, inertial mass and gravitational mass are the same, and all accelerated reference frames (such as a uniformly rotating reference frame with its proper time dilation) ...
2
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2answers
2k views

Accelerating elevator?

If your in an elevator accelerating downwards faster than gravity, would you be pushed up to the ceiling? Since gravity cannot match the acceleration of the elevator, you're wouldn't be able to move ...
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4answers
110 views

Now when we can measure Gravitational Waves, how does the 'Principle of Equivalence' still hold true?

LIGO measured gravitational field waves. The whole thought experiment of Einstein, leading to ‘principle of equivalence’, assumes that there is no way to know inside the rocket that whether its ...
1
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1answer
65 views

How did Einstein generalise the Einstein elevator thought experiment to conclude with the equivalence principle?

Suppose a reference frame S1 is accelerated in the x direction with a constant acceleration g. A second frame S2 is at rest in a homogeneous gravitational field which imparts to all objects an ...
1
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4answers
142 views

Gravity, falling bodies, and the equivalence principle

Why is that bodies in a box accelerating uniformally in space that is sufficiently removed from gravitational fields fall identically to bodies in a box located in a homogeneous gravitational field (e....
1
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1answer
279 views

LIGO discovery: if the space “time” metric is changed, how is it measured? [duplicate]

Regarding the wonderful 2016 news about gravitational waves. Travel time in one arm of the LIGO is ~ 30μs. A gravitational wave affects the arm for some few hundred of these laps. Then for example ...
1
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2answers
170 views

Equivalence Principle holding in Special Relativity? (let alone QFT)

Motivation I am pretty confused of why people are hopeful to find a version of the equivalence principle ("the complete physical equivalence of a gravitational field and a corresponding acceleration ...
-6
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4answers
12k views

What is the difference between gravitation and magnetism?

If you compress a large mass, on the order of a star or the Earth, into a very small space, you get a black hole. Even for very large masses, it is possible in principle for it to occupy a very small ...
69
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7answers
4k views

If gravity is a pseudoforce in general relativity, then why is a graviton necessary?

As far as I’m aware, gravity in general relativity arises from the curvature of spacetime and is equivalent to an accelerated reference frame. Objects accelerating in a gravitational field are in fact ...
19
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3answers
1k views

Do accelerated charges radiate or not? [duplicate]

This questions has been asked all over the net (here included) but I can't find a satisfactory answer or discussion. Some say it does not radiate if the acceleration is caused by a uniform gravity ...
7
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4answers
5k views

Why acceleration is not relative in General Relativity?

I was thinking of it, If I say: "I'm moving at a velocity $v_1$ relative to a reference frame $M$ then the acceleration will be the derivative of $v_1$ relative to the reference frame $M$." In other ...
11
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4answers
1k views

Is the lay explanation of the equivalence principle wrong?

The common explanation/trope for the equivalence principle always has something to do with you being inside an elevator or spaceship, and your supposed inability to differentiate, say, gravity from a ...
4
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4answers
766 views

Doesn't Einstein's General Relativity violate the spirit of Principle of Relativity?

As is well established, Special Relativity ensures that no observer can ever tell from the experiments he has been doing in his car whether the car is moving or not as long as the car constitutes an ...
8
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1answer
405 views

Is quantizing acceleration equivalent to quantizing gravity?

It's been said that gravity is locally equivalent to acceleration. It is also been said, that we need to quantize gravity. But doesn't that imply that this would have to be equivalent to quantizing ...
7
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3answers
959 views

What is “a general covariant formulation of newtonian mechanics”?

I am a little confused: I read that there are general covariant formulations of Newtonian mechanics (e.g. here). I always thought: 1) A theory is covariant with respect to a group of transformations ...
3
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2answers
1k views

Is there an accepted axiomatic approach to general relativity?

I am reading Steven Weinberg's book Gravitation and Cosmology. He makes a big deal out of the equivalence principle and showed a bunch of deductions you can make based on it. This surprised me since ...