Questions tagged [tensor-calculus]

Tensor calculus (tensor analysis) is a systematic extension of vector calculus to multivector and tensor fields in a form that is independent of the choice of coordinates on the relevant manifold, but which accounts for respective sub-spaces, their symmetries, and their connections.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
2
votes
1answer
199 views

Tensor perturbation inflation

During inflation the metric is de-Sitter so $dt^2-d\underline{X}^2 $. I know that the eqn.motion governing GW's from inflation (tensor perturbations) is $$2H\dot{h}+\ddot{h}-\nabla^{2}_{i}h~=~0,$$ ...
5
votes
2answers
848 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
1k 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 $...
6
votes
1answer
264 views

Is it correct to sum over either index of the metric the same way?

I don't know if the following is correct, i want to compute the following derivative $$\frac{\partial }{\partial (\partial_{\mu}A_{\nu})}\left(\partial^{\alpha}A^{\beta}\partial_{\alpha}A_{\beta} \...
1
vote
0answers
159 views

Einstein +Maxwell 's tensor

Why is it true that we can deduce that Einstein's GR equations coupled with Maxwell's EM equations may be written in the form $$R_{ij}=C(F_{ik}F_j^{\,\,k}-{1\over 4}g_{ij}F_{mn}F^{mn})$$ without ...
3
votes
3answers
3k views

Maxwell Stress Tensor in the absence of a magnetic field

I'm having some trouble calculating the stress tensor in the case of a static electric field without a magnetic field. Following the derivation on Wikipedia, Start with Lorentz force: $$\mathbf{F} = ...
2
votes
1answer
343 views

Relationship between a formal vector derivative and time evolution of an operator

I'm an undergraduate in physics, with all the lack of knowledge inherent in that. In two of my classes, my professors introduced two equations which look eerily similar. The first, from general ...
0
votes
1answer
94 views

Two General Relativity questions

Hi When contracting $T^{\mu \nu}$ with $ g_{\mu \nu}$ does one get $T^{\mu \nu}_{\mu \nu} = T$? is the metric tensor already a sum over its component, so it is effectively a trace of a matrix with ...
10
votes
4answers
701 views

Is “entanglement” unique to quantum systems?

My text shows (sections 0.2 and 0.3) that the joint "state space" of a system composed of two subsystems with $k$ and $l$ "bits of information", respectively, requires $kl$ bits to fully describe it. ...
1
vote
0answers
116 views

Equivalence of simple formulations of qubit entanglement

I'm reading some very elementary treatments of quantum computation and am unsure about the correspondence among "definitions" of qubit entanglement. One definition states that (1) the bits of a two-...
2
votes
2answers
1k 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 $R_{\mu\nu}=g^{\sigma\rho}R_{\sigma\mu\rho\nu}$.
6
votes
1answer
982 views

Do partial derivatives commute on tensors?

Do partial derivatives commute on tensors? For example, is $$\partial_{\rho}\partial_{\sigma}h_{\mu\nu} - \partial_{\sigma}\partial_{\rho}h_{\mu\nu}=0$$ correct?
0
votes
3answers
1k 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: $(a^...
1
vote
1answer
689 views

Calculating electromagnetic invariant in matrix form

I'm kind of confused. I want to calculate the electromagnetic invariant $I := F^{\mu\nu}F_{\mu\nu} $, but I'm not sure what is the easiest way to do so. So, I was trying to do it in matrix form, i.e. ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Can one raise indices on covariant derivative and products thereof?

Can the following be true? $g^{\sigma\rho}\nabla_{\rho}\nabla_{\mu} = \nabla^{\sigma}\nabla_{\mu}$ $g^{\sigma\rho}\nabla_{\nu}\nabla_{\sigma} = \nabla_{\nu}\nabla^{\rho}$ $g^{\sigma\rho}\nabla_{\nu}\...
1
vote
1answer
2k 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
24k views

What does this quote about the four dimensional divergence of an antisymmetric tensor mean?

In the beginning, God said that the four dimensional divergence of an antisymmetric second rank tensor equals zero and there was light. Can someone explain what is the meaning of this quote by Michio ...
2
votes
1answer
260 views

Write $\epsilon_{\mu\nu\alpha\beta} F^{\mu\nu} F^{\alpha\beta}$ as a total divergence $\partial_\mu G^\mu$

I have the following homework problem in theoretical electrodynamics: Show that the gauge invariant Lagrange density $\epsilon_{\mu\nu\alpha\beta} F^{\mu\nu} F^{\alpha\beta}$ can be written as a ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Difference between $\partial$ and $\nabla$ in general relativity

I read a lot in Road to Reality, so I think I might use some general relativity terms where I should only special ones. In our lectures we just had $\partial_\mu$ which would have the plain partial ...
2
votes
1answer
121 views

Expectation of 2-form field $B_{MN}$ in string theory

In the context of string theory, in particular when we are dealing with a low energy effective action, if we have an effective action of the form, $$S_{\mathrm{eff}} \sim S^{(0)} + \alpha S^{(1)} + \...
2
votes
1answer
273 views

Construction of the supersymmetric Faraday tensor

When I first learned gauge theories in my introductory quantum field theory course, I was taught that the Faraday (field-strength) tensor can be constructed by computing the commutator of the gauge-...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

Levi Civita Symbol and contravariance vs covariance

I have a question regarding the Levi-Civita symbol and contravariance vs covariance. Some of this was asked in a previous post, but I think I need more clarification. Consider the magnetic field: \...
34
votes
5answers
26k 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 \beta}...
3
votes
2answers
270 views

Element of area in 4-dimensional space-time

How would you proof that $$ \mathrm {Tr} (\mathbf{S\cdot \bar S })=0$$ where $\mathbf S$ is an element of area delimited for the 4-vectors $\mathbf u$ and $\mathbf v$ given by $$S^{\alpha \beta}\equiv ...
22
votes
4answers
3k views

Why do Maxwell's equations contain each of a scalar, vector, pseudovector and pseudoscalar equation?

Maxwell's equations, in differential form, are $$\left\{\begin{align} \vec\nabla\cdot\vec{E}&=~\rho/\epsilon_0,\\ \vec\nabla\times\vec B~&=~\mu_0\vec J+\epsilon_0\mu_0\frac{\partial\vec E}{\...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

Diffeomorphisms, Isometries And General Relativity

Apologies if this question is too naive, but it strikes at the heart of something that's been bothering me for a while. Under a diffeomorphism $\phi$ we can push forward an arbitrary tensor field $F$ ...
0
votes
0answers
71 views

Cubic symmetry and a stiffness tensor [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Stiffness tensor Let's have a stiffness tensor: $$ a^{ijkl}: a^{ijkl} = a^{jikl} = a^{klij} = a^{ijlk}. $$ It has a 21 independent components for an anisotropic body. How ...
3
votes
1answer
442 views

Tensor Introduction [duplicate]

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, ...
2
votes
0answers
318 views

Stiffness tensor

Let's have a stiffness tensor: $$ a^{ijkl}: a^{ijkl} = a^{jikl} = a^{klij} = a^{ijlk}. $$ It has a 21 independent components for an anisotropic body. How does body symmetry (cubic, hexagonal etc.)...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

Tensor product notation [closed]

In the image there is a tensor product: $$F_{\mu\nu}F^{\mu\nu}=2(B^2-\frac{E^2}{c^2})$$ It's about how this operation on the co- and contravariant field strength tensors can give one of the ...
20
votes
2answers
4k 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?
1
vote
0answers
280 views

Representing a polarization vector for light as a 'manifold of two state'

Explain me these projections please Context: I was reading a paper (Phys. Rev. A 68, 052307) which involved mesoscopic coherent states of light. There, in order to calculate the uncertainty of a ...
2
votes
1answer
67 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

When and how do you represent a two body state as a tensor product?

I have read that in quantum mechanics, compound systems are constructed as tensor products. But on page 177 of Griffith, for example, a two body wavefunction is introduced as Psi (x1,y1,z1,x2,y2,z2,...
0
votes
1answer
131 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 \...
28
votes
4answers
12k views

What is the difference between a spinor and a vector or a tensor?

Why do we call a 1/2 spin particle satisfying the Dirac equation a spinor, and not a vector or a tensor?
4
votes
1answer
521 views

How quantum field transforms in case of some particular spin

Except when a particle is spin-0, field of all particles transforms when frame of reference is changed, and this defines what spin is. The question is, specifically how does the quantum field ...
3
votes
2answers
700 views

What are $\partial_t$ and $\partial^\mu$?

I'm reading the Wikipedia page for the Dirac equation: $\rho=\phi^*\phi\,$ ...... $J = -\frac{i\hbar}{2m}(\phi^*\nabla\phi - \phi\nabla\phi^*)$ with the conservation of probability ...
1
vote
1answer
551 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 $$ \sigma_{ik}(\vec{r})...
0
votes
2answers
269 views

Tensor Product of two doublets

What will be the tensor product of two doublets $$ (x_1,x_2) ~\text{and}~ (y_1,y_2)? $$ I am very much confused in determining this.
13
votes
4answers
4k 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. For ...
14
votes
3answers
9k 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Levi-Civita symbol in Euclidean space

Suppose a component of tensor field is described by $B^k=\varepsilon^{kij} \phi_{ij}$. If we define $B^k$ in an Euclidean space then does the rising or lowering of the indices of the Levi-Civita ...
2
votes
5answers
2k views

Understanding Tensors

I don't seem to be able to visualize tensors. I am reading The Morgan Kauffman Game Physics Engine Development and he uses tensors to represent aerodynamics but he doesn't explain them so I am not ...
5
votes
1answer
3k 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 ...
5
votes
1answer
402 views

Confused about indices of the Ricci tensor

In an intro to GR book the Ricci tensor is given as: $$R_{\mu\nu}=\partial_{\lambda}\Gamma_{\mu \nu}^{\lambda}-\Gamma_{\lambda \sigma}^{\lambda}\Gamma_{\mu \nu}^{\sigma}-[\partial_{\nu}\Gamma_{\mu \...
2
votes
0answers
336 views

How do I extend the Lorentz transformation metric to dimensions>4?

How do I extend the general Lorentz transformation matrix (not just a boost along an axis, but in directions where the dx1/dt, dx2/dt, dx3/dt, components are all not zero. For eg. as on the Wikipedia ...
1
vote
2answers
148 views

What should I call an n>4 dimensional Minkowski metric?

I am manipulating an $nxn$ metric where $n$ is often $> 4$, depending on the model. The $00$ component is always tau*constant, as in the Minkowski metric, but the signs on all components might be +...
56
votes
10answers
15k views

What is a tensor?

I have a pretty good knowledge of physics, but couldn't deeply understand what a tensor is and why it is so fundamental.
3
votes
1answer
586 views

Symmetrical Spinors and Symmetrical Tensors

In Quantum Electrodynamics by Landau and Lifshiz there is the following: The correspondence between the spinor $\zeta^{\alpha \dot{\beta}}$ and the 4-vector is a particular case of a general rule:...