Sunday, August 4, 2013

1308.0010 (Stefan Hofmann et al.)

Interpretation of the Weyl Tensor    [PDF]

Stefan Hofmann, Florian Niedermann, Robert Schneider
According to folklore in general relativity, the Weyl tensor can be decomposed into parts corresponding to Newton-like, incoming- and outgoing wave-like field components. It is shown here that this interpretation cannot be applied to space-time geometries with cylindrical isometries. This is done by investigating some well-known exact solutions of Einstein's field equations with whole-cylindrical symmetry, for which the physical interpretation is very clear, but for which the standard Weyl interpretation would give contradictory results. For planar or spherical geometries, however, the standard interpretation works for both, static and dynamical space-times. It is argued that one reason for the failure in the cylindrical case is that for waves spreading in two spatial dimensions there is no local criterion to distinguish incoming and outgoing waves already at the linear level. It turns out that Thorne's local energy notion, subject to certain qualifications, provides an efficient diagnostic tool to extract the proper physical interpretation of the space-time geometry in the case of cylindrical configurations.
View original:

No comments:

Post a Comment