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Questions tagged [semi-riemannian-geometry]

It is the study of smooth manifolds equipped with a non-degenerate metric tensor, not necessarily positive-definite (and hence a generalisation of [riemannian-geometry]). Included in this are metric tensors with index 1, called "Lorentzian", which are used to model spacetimes in (general-relativity).

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Gathering books on Lorentzian Geometry

I find it very hard to find books on Lorentzian Geometry, more focused on the geometry behind it, instead of books that go for the physics and General Relativity approach. More specifically, I'm ...
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Helices in Lorentz-Minkowski space $\Bbb L^3$.

Context: Consider the Lorentz-Minkowski space $\Bbb L^3$, with the metric: $$ds^2 = dx^2 + dy^2 - dz^2$$ (which I'll denote just by $\langle \cdot, \cdot \rangle$) If $\alpha$ is spacelike and ${\bf ...
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How are the pseudo-Riemannian metric tensor properties restricted by the manifold topology in pseudo-Riemannian manifolds?

My understanding is that a pseudo-Riemannian metric tensor induces a topology that is not compatible with the manifold topology, and obviously the manifold topology prevails if we are to have a ...
7
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1answer
324 views

Curvature of De Sitter's space: where does the sign comes?

Consider $\Bbb L^3 = (\Bbb R^3, {\rm d}s^2)$, where: $${\rm d}s^2 = {\rm d}x^2 + {\rm d}y^2 - {\rm d}z^2.$$ We have both the hyperbolic space: $$\Bbb H^2(-1) = \{(x,y,z) \in \Bbb L^3 \mid x^2+y^2-z^...
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Are lightlike curves in the De Sitter space straight lines?

I think that every lightlike curve in $\mathbb{S}_1^2 \subseteq \mathbb{L}^3$ must be a line. But I'm having trouble concluding it. Let $\alpha\colon I \subseteq \Bbb R \to \Bbb S^2_1 \subseteq \Bbb ...
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1answer
360 views

When do isometries commute with the compatible derivative operator on a semi-Riemannian manifold?

Let $M$ and $\tilde{M}$ be smooth manifolds, each with a metric $g_{ab}$ and $\tilde{g}_{ab}$, assumed here to be smooth symmetric invertible tensor fields, which are non-degenerate but not ...
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1answer
260 views

Variation of a differential form

Physicists sometimes get the lagrangian $$\mathcal{L}=-\frac{1}{2}\mbox dA \wedge \star \mbox dA - A \wedge \star J$$ define a functional given by $$S(A)=\int_{N_4} \mathcal{L}= \int_{N_4}-\frac{1}{2}...
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1answer
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Justifying “determinant” of second fundamental form using the definition of sectional curvature

Question: if $M\subseteq \widetilde{M}$ is a non-degenerate hypersurface in a pseudo-Riemannian manifold $M$, then is it true that $$\langle X, \widetilde{\nabla}_XN\rangle =\langle Y, \widetilde{\...
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Master's Exploration in General Relativity

just throwing a query out to the Math community. I'm about to embark on a master's in Gravitation, Cosmology and General Relativity and was looking for possible subjects to start researching. My main ...
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Show isometry of flow on a compact Riemannian manifold where the vector field is Killing

Let $(M,g)$ be a Riemannian manifold, $\nabla$ the Levi-Civita connection of $g$. A vector filed $V$ on $M$ is called a Killing field if for every $p\in M$ and every $X,Y\in T_p M$, $$ g(\nabla_X V, Y)...
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Vectors that geodesically generate the same surface

Suppose that $\langle M,g \rangle$ is a complete, simply connected Riemannian symmetric space. The surface geodesically generated by a vector $\xi$ in $T_pM$ is the set of points lying on geodesics ...
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Could you explain the failure of the Hodge decomposition to exist for non-compact manifolds?

I'm a physicist and the mathematics around the Hodge Decomposition is way formal than I can currently follow (I'm trying to better myself but it'll take a while). Specifically what I'm (pragmatically)...
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Searching for a thesis.

In several articles about curves, etc, in Minkowski spaces $\Bbb L^3$ and $\Bbb L^4$, there is Walrave, J., Curves and surfaces in Minkowski space. Doctoral Thesis, K.U. Leuven, Fac. of Science, ...
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1answer
351 views

Gram-Schmidt process in Minkowski space $\Bbb L^n$.

I'm trying to prove a version of Gram-Schmidt orthogonalization process in Minkowski space $\Bbb L^n$ (for concreteness, I'll put the sign last). I am not interested in the existence of orthonormal ...
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What is the exact motivation for the Minkowski metric?

In introductory texts about Lorentz Geometry, one always learns about the Minkowski space, i.e. $R^4$ with the Minkowski metric $$ m(x, y) := -x_0 y_0 + x_1y_1 + x_2y_2+ x_3 y_3 $$ Using this ...
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Finding local orthonormal frame on a Pseudo-Riemannian Manifold

Suppose we have a semi-Riemannian manifold $(M^n,g)$ with metric signature $(n-k,k)$. By definition, each $p \in M$ the map $g_p : T_pM \times T_pM \to \Bbb{R}$ is a non-degenerate, symmetric, ...
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1answer
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About codifying length and energy using a one-form

Let $M^n$ be a smooth manifold and $g$ be a Riemannian metric on $M$. Is there $\omega \in \Omega^1(M)$ such that $\int_c \omega = \ell(c)$ for every curve in $M$? In general the answer seems to ...
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1answer
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Does the Riemann tensor encode all information about the second derivatives of the metric?

In answer to this question I suggested the following as a motivation for the definition of the Riemann tensor: Let $\mathcal M$ and $\mathcal N$ be two dim-$n$ Lorentzian manifolds with points $x\...
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1answer
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Intuition for warped product manifold.

I am reading about wave equations in manifold and encountered the term warped product manifold. More specifically, in my case it is defined as follows, $$N:=[0,\phi^*) \times_g \mathbb S^{k-1}$$ ...
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1answer
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How to rigorously differentiate the square of the geodesic distance?

Let $(M,g)$ be a Lorentzian 4-dimensional manifold, in other words, $g$ has signature $(-,+,+,+)$. If $U$ is a geodesically convex set, one defines $\sigma : U\times U\to \mathbb{R}$ in the following ...
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1answer
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Failure of geodesic uniqueness - what does it say about the manifold?

I am more of a physicist than a mathematician, but this question is properly mathematical rather than physical, even though it is motivated by a physical application; please assume mathematical ...
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2answers
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No Lorentzian metric on $S^{2}$

In the book Riemannian Geometry by Gallot et al there is a remark at the beginning that there is no Lorentzian metric on $S^{2}$. Is it a difficult theorem? Or there is an easy solution? Any hint/idea ...
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Physical meaning of Hawking's Singularity theorem

I'm studying O'Neill's "Semi-Riemannian Geometry with applications to Relativity". I know that the following theorems are related to the Big Bang, but I don't understand how. Let $M$ be a semi-...
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Integration on manifold using the flow of a vector field

In a Physics paper the author states without proof something that seemed quite strange to me. The paper is on General Relativity, so he assumes a Lorentzian manifold $(M,g)$ is given. His hypothesis ...
4
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1answer
99 views

On geodesics in Schwarzschild spacetime

I am required to show that a circular lightlike geodesic exists in the Schwarzschild spacetime, and to find its radius. What's the best way to start this?
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2answers
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Definition of gradient of a function $f$ in Riemannian manifold

I'm reading Semi Riemannian Geometry with applications to relativity by Barret Oneill and I'm trying understand the definition of gradient of a function $f$ in Riemannian Manifold. I know that ...
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3answers
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How to visualize rotation on a hyperbola?

I am studying Lorentz transform and I do not quite get what it means to use the hyperbolic matrix to rotation a point on a hyperbola, mainly it is because the hyperbola consists of two divergent ...
3
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1answer
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Does a coordinate chart have a smooth orthonormal frame w.r.t. a semi-Riemannian metric?

If the metric is definite, then the answer is yes: the coordinate basis vectors form a smooth local frame, and each basis vector has non-zero length by definiteness, and one can run the Gram-Schmidt ...
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2answers
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Conformal Killing vectors fields on Minkowski spacetime

As is well known Minkowski spacetime (which is four dimensional vector space with scalar product $\eta _{\mu \nu}$ of signature $-+++$) is maximally symmetric, which manifests itself in presence of ...
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Is the shortest path in flat hyperbolic space straight relative to Euclidean space?

I have the following metric $$ ds^2 = dt^2-dx^2 $$ and I wanted to prove to myself that the shortest path for this metric is straight. I used the following relation $x=f(t)$ and $$ S = \int_{t_1}^{t_2}...
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Relation between lie derivative of a vector field and associated 1-form in a Lorentzian manifold

Let $(M,g)$ be a Lorentzian manifold and $X$ and $u$ represent two vector fields in $M$ such that $\mathcal{L}_X u=0$, that is, $u$ is Lie transported along the integral curve of $X$. My question is: ...
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1answer
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Is there a coordinate free proof for this result?

Let $(M,g)$ be a smooth manifold with metric tensor $g$. For this problem, the signature of $g$ seems to be of no importance. Consider a vector bundle $\pi : E\to M$ and a smooth embedding $\phi : N\...
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1answer
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Why these tensor fields do not depend on the hypersurfaces chosen to define them?

In the paper Dynamics of Extended Bodies in General Relativity. I. Momentum and Angular Momentum, W.G. Dixon proposes definitions for momentum and angular momentum of a certain distribution of matter ...
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1answer
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Why is an interval invariant on coordinate transformations?

I learned that in (semi-)Riemannian geometry an interval $ds^{2}=g_{ab}dx^{a}dx^{b}$ is invariant on coordinate transformations. But there is something I do not get in the concept. Consider the simple ...
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1answer
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Is every hyperbolic isometry the restriction of an orthochronous Lorentz transformation?

I know that every isometry of the sphere $\Bbb S^2$ is the restriction of some $A \in {\rm O}(3,\Bbb R)$: namely, if $A_0:\Bbb S^2\to \Bbb S^2$ is an isometry, then $A_0 = A\big|_{\Bbb S^2}$ where $$...
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1answer
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Example of a degenerate metric which doesn't have the Levi-Civita connection

The proof of existence of the Levi-Civita connection for pseudo-Riemannian manifolds uses heavily the fact that the metric is non-degenerate - so that $\nabla_XY$ is characterized by all the values $\...
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1answer
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$U$ is timelike if its orthogonal complement $U^\perp$ is spacelike

Consider the bilinear form $\left<x,y\right>_{n,1} = \sum_{j=1}^n x_j y_j - x_{n+1} y_{n+1}$ on $\mathbb{R}^{n+1}$. A vector $x \in \mathbb{R}^{n+1}$ is said to be timelike if $\left<x,x\...
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1answer
277 views

Calculating Christoffel symbols using variational geodesic equation

Given the line element $$ds^2 = e^v dt^2 - e^{\lambda} dr^2 - r^2 d \theta^2 - r^2 \sin^2 \theta d \phi^2$$ we wish to compute the Christoffel symbols $\Gamma^{a}_{bc}$ using the geodesic equation. ...
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1answer
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Accounting for signs in divergence thm. on Lorentzian manifold

I am trying to learn about integration in Lorentzian manifolds (I will use signature -+++) and have some problems. Oft quoted (in books for GR) form of divergence theorem is: $\int _U div( X )vol_M=\...
3
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1answer
188 views

Moving frame in a semi-Riemannian manifold

Can someone point me some reference for the moving frame theory in semi-Riemannian manifolds, using differential forms? In special, I'm looking for a version of Cartan's structural equations. I've ...
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1answer
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About reparametrization of timelike curves in $\mathbb{L}^3$ (Lorentz-Minkowski space)

I think there is something wrong with the proof this text gives of Lemma $2.1.5$, in pages $19$ and $20$, for timelike curves. I used another function, and it seems to work. Either I'm wrong, or he is....
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1answer
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Flow of vector field on semi-Riemannian manifold

Consider $\mathbb{R}^{n+1}$ with the metric given by $$ g(x,x) = 2x_1x_2 + \sum_{i=3}^{n+1}x_i^2 $$ and $M$ the set of $x$ such that $g(x,x)=1$. Further, take a basis $e_1,...,e_n$ for $\mathbb{R}^{n+...
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Constant sectional curvature and unit normal vector to a hypersurface totally geodesic

I was reading about hypersurfaces totally geodesic when I found the next proposition: The sectional curvature $K$ of $M$ is constant at $p$ if and only if every unit vector in $T_{p}(M)$ is normal to ...
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3answers
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Lorentz Transformations Vs Coordinate Transformations

I'm really confused about Lorentz transformations at the moment. In most books on QFT, Special Relativity or Electrodynamics, people talk about Lorentz transformations as some kind of special ...
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Estimating Lorentzian inner product

Let $\mathbb{L}^{n+1}$ be the Lorentz space, that is, the Euclidean space $\mathbb{R}^{n+1}$ equipped with the nondegenerate bilinear form $$ \langle x, y\rangle = x_1 y_1 + \cdots + x_n y_n - x_{n+1}...
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How to do calculus with split-complex (hyperbolic) numbers?

TL;DR: how do I define a "split-holomorphic" function? As far as I've heard, there is a notion of split-complex numbers: $z = x+uy$, with $u\not\in \Bbb R $ and $u^2 = 1$. One defines the conjugate ...
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2answers
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Riemannian geometry - worldline meets nullcone.

I've been studying the book "Semi-Riemannian Geometry" by B. O'Neill and doing some of the excersises. Chapter 6 (special relativity) includes the following one: If $p$ is an event not on the world ...
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How can the notion of “two curves just touching” (vs. “two curves intersecting”) be expressed for a given metric space?

A popular introductory description of a "tangent (in geometry)" is presented as "the tangent line (or simply tangent) to a plane curve at a given point is the straight line that "just touches" the ...
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Example of a connected semi-Riemannian manifold

Give an example of a connected semi-Riemannian manifold that is complete at one point but not complete.
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Second structural equations in lorentzian space $\Bbb L^3$.

I'm rewriting O'Neill's "Elementary Differential Geometry"'s section on connection forms in Lorentz-Minkowski space $\Bbb L^3$, and I'm having trouble proving the second structural equations $${\rm d}\...