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The Motion of Small Bodies in Space-time

Geroch, Robert and Weatherall, James Owen (2017) The Motion of Small Bodies in Space-time. [Preprint]

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Abstract

We consider the motion of small bodies in general relativity. The key result captures a sense in which such bodies follow timelike geodesics (or, in the case of charged bodies, Lorentz-force curves). This result clarifies the relationship between approaches that model such bodies as distributions supported on a curve, and those that employ smooth fields supported in small neighborhoods of a curve. This result also applies to "bodies" constructed from wave packets of Maxwell or Klein-Gordon fields. There follows a simple and precise formulation of the optical limit for Maxwell fields.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Geroch, Robertgeroch@uchicago.edu
Weatherall, James Owenweatherj@uci.edu0000-0003-1461-7821
Keywords: general relativity, Klein-Gordon fields, Maxwell equations, geodesic principle, Lorentz force law, tracking, no superluminal propagation
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Fields and Particles
Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Depositing User: James Owen Weatherall
Date Deposited: 14 Jul 2017 15:09
Last Modified: 14 Jul 2017 15:09
Item ID: 13203
Subjects: Specific Sciences > Physics > Fields and Particles
Specific Sciences > Physics
Specific Sciences > Physics > Relativity Theory
Date: 2017
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/13203

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