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Find out more about Instant Expert. Published in , it explains that what we perceive as the force of gravity in fact arises from the curvature of space and time. Einstein proposed that objects such as the sun and the Earth change this geometry.

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In the presence of matter and energy it can evolve, stretch and warp, forming ridges, mountains and valleys that cause bodies moving through it to zigzag and curve. So although Earth appears to be pulled towards the sun by gravity, there is no such force. It is simply the geometry of space-time around the sun telling Earth how to move. The general theory of relativity has far-reaching consequences.

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It not only explains the motion of the planets; it can also describe the history and expansion of the universe, the physics of black holes and the bending of light from distant stars and galaxies. We now know it was hot and dense and has been expanding for the past It is also populated with incredibly warped regions of space-time called black holes that trap anything falling within their clutches.

D'Inverno: Introducing Einstein's Relativity

General relativity: Black holes What happens when extreme gravity pierces the fabric of space-time? Space-time can tremble like the surface of a pond and it seems to be full of a mysterious form of energy that is pushing it apart. It is also conceivable for space-time to be so warped that it becomes possible to travel backwards in time.

Einstein's General Theory of Relativity - Lecture 1

General relativity: Gravitational waves Even empty space-time, devoid of stars and galaxies, can have a life of its own Read more. General relativity: Quantum gravity The big unsolved problem of modern physics is reconciling its two pillars: general relativity and quantum mechanics. Indeed, the book follows Einstein in that it introduces the theory very much from a physical point of view. Afterintroducing the special theory of relativity, the basic field equations of gravitation are derived and discussed carefully as a prelude to first solving them in simple cases and then exploring the three main areas of application.

Introducing Einstein's Relativity

Einstein's theory of relativity is undoubtedly one of the greatest achievements of the human mind. Yet, in this book, the author makes it possible for students with a wide range of abilities to deal confidently with the subject.

Based on the author's fifteen years experience of teaching thissubject, this is achieved by breaking down the main arguments into simple logical steps. The book includes numerous illustrative diagrams and exercises of varying degrees of difficulty , and as a result this book makes an excellent course for any student coming to the subject for the firsttime.