Written by two of the field's true pioneers, Spacetime Physics can extend and enhance coverage of specialty relativity in the classroom. This thoroughly up-to-date, highly accessible overview covers microgravity, collider accelerators, satellite probes, neutron detectors, radioastronomy, and pulsars. The chapter on general relativity with new material on gravity waves, black holes, and cosmology.
Twelve essays explore the philosophy of science in general and the physical sciences in particular
Provides the essential principles and results of special relativity as required by undergraduates. The text uses a geometric interpretation of space-time so that a general theory is seen as a natural extension of the special theory. Although most results are derived from first principles, complex and distracting mathematics is avoided and all mathematical steps and formulae are fully explained and interpreted, often with explanatory diagrams.; The emphasis throughout the text is on understanding the physics of relativity. The structure of the book is designed to allow students of different courses to choose their own route through the short self-contained sections in each chapter. The latter part of the book shows how Einstein's theory of gravity is central to unraveling fundamental questions of cosmology.
Presenting the history of space-time physics, from Newton to Einstein, as a philosophical development DiSalle reflects our increasing understanding of the connections between ideas of space and time and our physical knowledge. He suggests that philosophy's greatest impact on physics has come about, less by the influence of philosophical hypotheses, than by the philosophical analysis of concepts of space, time and motion, and the roles they play in our assumptions about physical objects and physical measurements. This way of thinking leads to interpretations of the work of Newton and Einstein and the connections between them. It also offers ways of looking at old questions about a priori knowledge, the physical interpretation of mathematics, and the nature of conceptual change. Understanding Space-Time will interest readers in philosophy, history and philosophy of science, and physics, as well as readers interested in the relations between physics and philosophy.
Spacetime Physics Research Trends
In this book Rickles considers several interpretative difficulties raised by gauge-type symmetries (those that correspond to no change in physical state). The ubiquity of such symmetries in modern physics renders them an urgent topic in philosophy of physics. Rickles focuses on spacetime physics, and in particular classical and quantum general relativity. Here the problems posed are at their most pathological, involving the apparent disappearance of spacetime! Rickles argues that both traditional ontological positions should be replaced by a structuralist account according to which relational structure is what the physics is about. · Unified treatment of gauge symmetries and their relationship to ontology in physics · Brings philosophy of space and time into step with developments in modern physics · Argues against the received view on the implications of symmetries in physics · Provides elementary treatments of technical issues · Illustrates a novel defense of structuralism
This book, explores the conceptual foundations of Einstein's theory of relativity: the fascinating, yet tangled, web of philosophical, mathematical, and physical ideas that is the source of the theory's enduring philosophical interest. Originally published in 1983. The Princeton Legacy Library uses the latest print-on-demand technology to again make available previously out-of-print books from the distinguished backlist of Princeton University Press. These editions preserve the original texts of these important books while presenting them in durable paperback and hardcover editions. The goal of the Princeton Legacy Library is to vastly increase access to the rich scholarly heritage found in the thousands of books published by Princeton University Press since its founding in 1905.
This monograph investigates the development of human spatial knowledge by analyzing its elementary structures and studying how it is further shaped by various societal conditions. By taking a thoroughly historical perspective on knowledge and integrating results from various disciplines, this work throws new light on long-standing problems in epistemology such as the relation between experience and preformed structures of cognition. What do the orientation of apes and the theory of relativity have to do with each other? Readers will learn how different forms of spatial thinking are related in a long-term history of knowledge. Scientific concepts of space such as Newton’s absolute space or Einstein’s curved spacetime are shown to be rooted in pre-scientific structures of knowledge, while at the same time enabling the integration of an ever expanding corpus of experiential knowledge. This work addresses all readers interested in questions of epistemology, in particular philosophers and historians of science. It integrates forms of spatial knowledge from disciplines including anthropology, developmental psychology and cognitive sciences, amongst others.
Celebrating the one hundredth anniversary of the 1909 publication of Minkowski’s seminal paper "Space and Time", this volume includes a fresh translation as well as the original in German, and a number of contributed papers on the still-controversial subject.
This book contains selected papers from the First International Conference on the Ontology of Spacetime. Its fourteen chapters address two main questions: first, what is the current status of the substantivalism/relationalism debate, and second, what about the prospects of presentism and becoming within present-day physics and its philosophy? The overall tenor of the four chapters of the book’s first part is that the prospects of spacetime substantivalism are bleak, although different possible positions remain with respect to the ontological status of spacetime. Part II and Part III of the book are devoted to presentism, eternalism, and becoming, from two different perspectives. In the six chapters of Part II it is argued, in different ways, that relativity theory does not have essential consequences for these issues. It certainly is true that the structure of time is different, according to relativity theory, from the one in classical theory. But that does not mean that a decision is forced between presentism and eternalism, or that becoming has proved to be an impossible concept. It may even be asked whether presentism and eternalism really offer different ontological perspectives at all. The writers of the last four chapters, in Part III, disagree. They argue that relativity theory is incompatible with becoming and presentism. Several of them come up with proposals to go beyond relativity, in order to restore the prospects of presentism. · Space and time in present-day physics and philosophy · Introduction from scratch of the debates surrounding time · Broad spectrum of approaches, coherently represented
One of the most of exciting aspects is the general relativity pred- tion of black holes and the Such Big Bang. predictions gained weight the theorems through Penrose. singularity pioneered In various by te- books on theorems general relativity singularity are and then presented used to that black holes exist and that the argue universe started with a To date what has big been is bang. a critical of what lacking analysis these theorems predict-’ We of really give a proof a typical singul- theorem and this ity use theorem to illustrate problems arising through the of possibilities violations" and "causality weak "shell very crossing These singularities". add to the problems weight of view that the point theorems alone singularity are not sufficient to the existence of predict physical singularities. The mathematical theme of the book In order to both solid gain a of and intuition understanding good for any mathematical theory, one,should to realise it as model of try a a fam- iar non-mathematical theories have had concept. Physical an especially the important on of and impact development mathematics, conversely various modern theories physical rather require sophisticated mathem- ics for their formulation. both and mathematics Today, physics are so that it is often difficult complex to master the theories in both very s- in the of jects. However, case differential pseudo-Riemannian geometry or the general relativity between and mathematics relationship physics is and it is therefore especially close, to from interd- possible profit an ciplinary approach.
Einstein's General Theory of Relativity leads to two remarkable predictions: first, that the ultimate destiny of many massive stars is to undergo gravitational collapse and to disappear from view, leaving behind a 'black hole' in space; and secondly, that there will exist singularities in space-time itself. These singularities are places where space-time begins or ends, and the presently known laws of physics break down. They will occur inside black holes, and in the past are what might be construed as the beginning of the universe. To show how these predictions arise, the authors discuss the General Theory of Relativity in the large. Starting with a precise formulation of the theory and an account of the necessary background of differential geometry, the significance of space-time curvature is discussed and the global properties of a number of exact solutions of Einstein's field equations are examined. The theory of the causal structure of a general space-time is developed, and is used to study black holes and to prove a number of theorems establishing the inevitability of singualarities under certain conditions. A discussion of the Cauchy problem for General Relativity is also included in this 1973 book.
From the reviews: "This attractive book provides an account of the theory of special relativity from a geometrical viewpoint, explaining the unification and insights that are given by such a treatment. [...] Can be read with profit by all who have taken a first course in relativity physics." ASLIB Book Guide
This unique book offers a concise, introductory overview of general relativity and black holes, motivating students to become active participants in carrying out their own investigations. To this end, the book uses calculus and algebra, rather than tensors, to make general relativity accessible to sophomores and juniors. Five chapters introduce basic concepts, and seven projects require the reader to apply these basic concepts to real astronomical applications.
The success of Newton's mechanic, Maxwell's electrodynamic, Einstein's theories of relativity, and quantum mechanics is a strong argument for the space-time continuum. Nevertheless, doubts have been expressed about the use of a continuum in a science squarely based on observation and measurement. An exact science requires that qualitative arguments must be reduced to quantitative statements. The observability of a continuum can be reduced from qualitative arguments to quantitative statements by means of information theory.Information theory was developed during the last decades within electrical communications, but it is almost unknown in physics. The closest approach to information theory in physics is the calculus of propositions, which has been used in books on the frontier of quantum mechanics and the general theory of relativity. Principles of information theory are discussed in this book. The ability to think readily in terms of a finite number of discrete samples is developed over many years of using information theory and digital computers, just as the ability to think readily in terms of a continuum is developed by long use of differential calculus.
Art interprets the visible world. Physics charts its unseen workings. The two realms seem completely opposed. But consider that both strive to reveal truths for which there are no words––with physicists using the language of mathematics and artists using visual images. In Art & Physics, Leonard Shlain tracks their breakthroughs side by side throughout history to reveal an astonishing correlation of visions. From the classical Greek sculptors to Andy Warhol and Jasper Johns, and from Aristotle to Einstein, artists have foreshadowed the discoveries of scientists, such as when Monet and Cezanne intuited the coming upheaval in physics that Einstein would initiate. In this lively and colorful narrative, Leonard Shlain explores how artistic breakthroughs could have prefigured the visionary insights of physicists on so many occasions throughout history. Provicative and original, Art & Physics is a seamless integration of the romance of art and the drama of science––and an exhilarating history of ideas.
In this book, Robert Wald provides a coherent, pedagogical introduction to the formulation of quantum field theory in curved spacetime. He begins with a treatment of the ordinary one-dimensional quantum harmonic oscillator, progresses through the construction of quantum field theory in flat spacetime to possible constructions of quantum field theory in curved spacetime, and, ultimately, to an algebraic formulation of the theory. In his presentation, Wald disentangles essential features of the theory from inessential ones (such as a particle interpretation) and clarifies relationships between various approaches to the formulation of the theory. He also provides a comprehensive, up-to-date account of the Unruh effect, the Hawking effect, and some of its ramifications. In particular, the subject of black hole thermodynamics, which remains an active area of research, is treated in depth. This book will be accessible to students and researchers who have had introductory courses in general relativity and quantum field theory, and will be of interest to scientists in general relativity and related fields.