Publikace ÚTF

Interpreting spacetimes of any dimension using geodesic deviation

Podolský, J.; Švarc, R.

We present a general method that can be used for geometrical and physical interpretation of an arbitrary spacetime in four or any higher number of dimensions. It is based on the systematic analysis of relative motion of free test particles. We demonstrate that the local effect of the gravitational field on particles, as described by the equation of geodesic deviation with respect to a natural orthonormal frame, can always be decomposed into a canonical set of transverse, longitudinal and Newton–Coulomb-type components, isotropic influence of a cosmological constant, and contributions arising from specific matter content of the Universe. In particular, exact gravitational waves in Einstein’s theory always exhibit themselves via purely transverse effects with D(D-3)/2 independent polarization states. To illustrate the utility of this approach, we study the family of pp-wave spacetimes in higher dimensions and discuss specific measurable effects on a detector located in four spacetime dimensions. For example, the corresponding deformations caused by generic higher-dimensional gravitational waves observed in such physical subspace need not be trace-free.
journal:Phys. Rev. D
pacs:04.50.-h, 04.20.Jb, 04.30.-w, 04.30.Nk
arxiv1201.4790v2.pdf (355.02 kB)

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