Introduction to General Relativity

Introduction to General Relativity

International Series of Monographs in Natural Philosophy

1st Edition - January 1, 1974

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  • Author: H. A. Atwater
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483160429

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Introduction to General Relativity is an introductory text on the concepts and modes of calculation used in general relativity. Topics covered range from Newton's laws of motion and the Galilean transformation to tensor analysis, equations of motion of free particles, electromagnetism, and gravitational fields and waves. Solutions of the field equations are also given. The emphasis is on the actual performance of relativistic calculations, rather than on mathematical rigor or exhaustive completeness. This volume is comprised of nine chapters and begins with an overview of the theory of relativity, which includes special relativity and general relativity. The discussion then turns to Newton's laws of motion and the Galilean transformation, electromagnetism and the Galilean transformation, and the Lorentz transformation. Subsequent chapters explore tensor analysis; equations of motion of free particles; gravitational fields and waves; relativity in cosmology; and unified theories and quantized theories of general relativity. The final chapter is devoted to Minkowski's coordinates and orthogonal transformations. This book will be a valuable resource for students of physics.

Table of Contents

  • Preface

    1. Introduction

    1.1. Newton's Laws and the Galilean Transformation

    1.2. Electromagnetism and the Galilean Transformation

    1.3. The Lorentz Transformation

    1.4. The World-Line Element

    1.5. The Metric Tensor and Physical Law


    2. Tensor Analysis

    2.1. Coordinate Transformation of Tensors

    2.2. The Metric Tensor

    2.3. Parallel Translation of a Tensor

    2.4. The Covariant Derivative

    2.5. Tensor Products

    2.6. Tensor Densities

    2.7. The Riemann Curvature Tensor

    2.8. The Bianchi Identities and Einstein's Tensor

    2.9. Calculation of a Curvature: Example


    3. Equations of Motion of Free Particles

    3.1. The Equation of the Geodesic Lines

    3.2. The Generation of Christoffel Symbols from the Euler Equations of the Geodesic Theorem

    3.3. Gravitational Potentials and Fields

    3.4. Differential Equations of the Metric Tensor in Empty Space

    3.5. Field Equations in the Presence of Matter

    3.6. The Matter—Energy Tensor

    3.7. Deviation of Geodesic Lines in a Space with Curvature

    3.8. Tangent Flat Spaces


    4. Solutions of the Field Equations

    4.1. The Static Spherically Symmetric Gravitation Field

    4.2. The Schwarzschild Metric

    4.3. Precession of Orbital Perihelion

    4.4. Deflection of Light Rays in a Gravitational Field

    4.5. Gravitational Red Shift of Spectral Lines

    4.6. Application of the Centrosymmetric Metric in Non-Empty Space

    4.7. DeSitter's Cosmological Metric

    4.8. Field of a Charged Mass Point


    5. Electromagnetism in General Relativity

    5.1. The Electromagnetic Potential and Four-Current

    5.2. The Tensor of Electromagnetic Fields and the Field Equations

    5.3. The Electromagnetic Energy Tensor

    5.4. Transformation of Fields: Inertial Frames

    5.5. Transformation of the Field Equations: Non-inertial Frame


    6. Gravitational Fields and Waves

    6.1. Space and Time Measurements in Non-Inertial Frames

    6.1a. Spatial Line Element of a General Metric

    6.2. The Schwarzschild Gravitational Field

    6.3. Gravitational Waves


    7. Relativity in Cosmology

    7.1. Metric Tensor of the Universe: the Robertson—Walker Metric

    7.2. The Time-dependent Scale of the Universe

    7.3. The Steady State Universe

    7.4. Non-Expanding Model of the Universe: the Goedel Metric


    8. Unified Theories and Quantized Theories of General Relativity

    8.1. Unified Field Theories

    8.2. "Already Unified" Field Theory

    8.3. Quantization of the Gravitational Field

    9. Minkowski's Coordinates and Orthogonal Transformations

    9.1. Orthogonal Lorentz Transformations

    9.2. World-Line Four-Vectors

    9.3. Forces and Momenta in Three and Four Dimensions

    9.4. Relativistic Energy of a Free Particle in an Inertial Frame

    9.5. Electromagnetism in the Minkowski Frame

    9.6. The Wave Propagation Vector


    Appendix I

    Appendix II

    Appendix III

    Author Index

    Subject Index

    Other Titles in the Series in Natural Philosophy

Product details

  • No. of pages: 232
  • Language: English
  • Copyright: © Pergamon 1974
  • Published: January 1, 1974
  • Imprint: Pergamon
  • eBook ISBN: 9781483160429

About the Author

H. A. Atwater

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  • StanlyWalker Sun Jun 24 2018

    It should be in every relativity collection

    This book is the one Ihad in my undergraduate relativity course. I love it! It is very well written, covers a lot of topics, and presented in a way that makes the subject easy to comprehend.