Null cones in lorentz-covariant general relativity

Abstract

The oft-neglected issue of the causal structure in the flat spacetime approach to Einstein's theory of gravity is considered. Consistency requires that the flat metric's null cone be respected, but this does not automatically happen. After reviewing the history of this problem, we introduce a generalized eigenvector formalism to give a kinematic description of the relation between the two null cones, based on the Segre' classification of symmetric rank 2 tensors with respect to a Lorentzian metric. Then we propose a method to enforce special relativistic causality by using the gauge freedom to restrict the configuration space suitably. A set of new variables just covers this smaller configuration space and respects the flat metric's null cone automatically. Respecting the flat metric's null cone ensures that the spacetime is globally hyperbolic, indicating that the Hawking black hole information loss paradox does not arise in the special relativistic approach to Einstein's theory.

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2009-01-28

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J. Brian Pitts
University of Lincoln

Citations of this work

The dynamical approach to spin-2 gravity.Kian Salimkhani - 2020 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 72:29-45.
Einstein׳s Equations for Spin 2 Mass 0 from Noether׳s Converse Hilbertian Assertion.J. Brian Pitts - 2016 - Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part B: Studies in History and Philosophy of Modern Physics 56:60-69.

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