COVID-19 Update: We are currently shipping orders daily. However, due to transit disruptions in some geographies, deliveries may be delayed. To provide all customers with timely access to content, we are offering 50% off Science and Technology Print & eBook bundle options. Terms & conditions.
Gravitation and Relativity - 1st Edition - ISBN: 9780080205670, 9781483151113

Gravitation and Relativity

1st Edition

International Series in Natural Philosophy

Author: M. G. Bowler
Editor: D. Ter Haar
eBook ISBN: 9781483151113
Imprint: Pergamon
Published Date: 1st January 1976
Page Count: 182
Sales tax will be calculated at check-out Price includes VAT/GST
Price includes VAT/GST

Institutional Subscription

Secure Checkout

Personal information is secured with SSL technology.

Free Shipping

Free global shipping
No minimum order.


Gravitation and Relativity generalizes Isaac Newton’s theory of gravitation using the elementary tools of Albert Einstein’s special relativity. Topics covered include gravitational waves, martian electrodynamics, relativistic gravitational fields and gravitational forces, the distortion of reference frames, and the precession of the perihelion of Mercury. Black holes and the geometry of spacetime also receive consideration. This book is comprised of 10 chapters; the first of which briefly reviews special relativity, with the emphasis on the Lorentz covariance of the equations of physics. This topic is then followed by a short discussion on accelerations in the framework of special relativity. Two problems related to the gravitational deflection of light and how to detect a gravitational acceleration by observations within a freely falling laboratory are discussed in this book. The chapters that follow focus on the Eötvös-Dicke experiments that established the identity of inertial and gravitational mass; the equations of electrodynamics and electrostatics; force laws and equations of motion; and the precession of the perihelion of Mercury. The reader is also introduced to the nature of gravitational radiation; its generation and detection; and the relation between the metric tensor and gravitational potentials. The book concludes with a chapter on black holes and how they may manifest themselves to the astronomer. This monograph will appeal not only to professional physicists but also to undergraduates in physics who want to know a great deal about gravitation and relativity.

Table of Contents



Chapter 1. Special Relativity and Accelerations

1.1 Special Relativity in Brief

1.2 Special Relativity and Accelerations

1.3 Acceleration and Gravity

1.4 Measurements of the Gravitational Frequency Shift

1.5 The Gravitational Deflection of Light

1.6 An Apparent Paradox


Chapter 2. The Eötvös-Dicke Experiments

2.1 Gravitational and Inertial Mass

2.2 The Eötvös-Dicke Experiments

2.3 Implications of the Null Result of Eötvös-Dicke Experiments


Chapter 3. Martian Electrodynamics

3.1 Fields

3.2 Forces

3.3 The Lagrangian Formalism: for Experts


Chapter 4. Relativistic Gravitational Fields

4.1 The Gravitational Poisson Equation

4.2 The Properties of the Source of Gravitational Fields

4.3 Possible Forms of Relativistic Gravitational Fields

4.4 Non-Linearity of the Field Equations


Chapter 5. Relativistic Gravitational Forces

5.1 The Velocity of Light

5.2 Radar Ranging in the Solar System

5.3 Further Remarks on the Variable Velocity of Light

5.4 The Force Laws and Equations of Motion

5.5 The Effects of Local Forces

5.6 Gravitational Deflection and Gravitational Redshift


Chapter 6. The Distortion of Reference Frames

6.1 Introduction

6.2 Atoms in Gravitational Fields: the Change of Scale

6.3 The Weight of an Atom

6.4 Covariant Equations of Motion

6.5 The Lagrangian Formalism: again for Experts


Chapter 7. The Precession of the Perihelion of Mercury

7.1 Introduction

7.2 Perihelion Advance in Newtonian Mechanics

7.3 The Relativistic Theory and the Need for Nonlinear Terms

7.4 Strong Equivalence and the Nonlinear Terms

7.5 Calculation of the Advance of Perihelion

7.6 The Precession of the Perihelion of Mercury

7.7 The Oblateness of the Sun


Chapter 8. Gravitational Waves

8.1 Introduction

8.2 Transverse Nature of the Waves

8.3 Physical Effects of Gravitational Waves

8.4 Polarization Properties of Gravitational Waves

8.5 Detection of Gravitational Waves

8.6 Generation of Gravitational Waves

8.7 Attempts to Detect Gravitational Waves


Chapter 9. Gravitation and the Geometry of Spacetime

9.1 Introduction

9.2 The Metric Tensor and Equations of Motion in Free Fall

9.3 Concerning the Field Equations

9.4 The Metric Tensor in some Simple Situations

9.5 An Example of an Inertial Field

9.6 The External Spherically Symmetric Gravitational Field

9.7 The Gravitational Redshift

9.8 Deflection of Light by the Sun

9.9 Radar Echo Delay

9.10 The Precession of Planetary Perihelia


Chapter 10. Black Holes

10.1 Strong Gravitational Fields

10.2 The Propagation of Light in Strong Fields

10.3 Particle Motion in the Field of a Black Hole

10.4 The Search for Black Holes

10.5 The Universe




No. of pages:
© Pergamon 1976
1st January 1976
eBook ISBN:

About the Author

M. G. Bowler

Affiliations and Expertise

Department of Nuclear Physics, Oxford University, UK

About the Editor

D. Ter Haar

Ratings and Reviews