*Michele Maggiore*

- Published in print:
- 2007
- Published Online:
- January 2008
- ISBN:
- 9780198570745
- eISBN:
- 9780191717666
- Item type:
- chapter

- Publisher:
- Oxford University Press
- DOI:
- 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198570745.003.0001
- Subject:
- Physics, Particle Physics / Astrophysics / Cosmology

This chapter discusses how gravitational waves emerge from general relativity, and what their properties are. The most straightforward approach is ‘linearized theory’, where the Einstein equations ...
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This chapter discusses how gravitational waves emerge from general relativity, and what their properties are. The most straightforward approach is ‘linearized theory’, where the Einstein equations are expanded around the flat Minkowski metric. It is shown how a wave equation emerges and how the solutions can be put in an especially simple form by an appropriate gauge choice. Using standard tools of general relativity such as the geodesic equation and the equation of the geodesic deviation, how these waves interact with a set of test masses is detailed. The energy and momentum carried by GWs are then computed and discussed. This chapter approaches the problem from a geometric point of view, identifying the energy-momentum tensor of GWs from their effect on the background curvature. Finally, GW propagation in curved space is discussed.Less

This chapter discusses how gravitational waves emerge from general relativity, and what their properties are. The most straightforward approach is ‘linearized theory’, where the Einstein equations are expanded around the flat Minkowski metric. It is shown how a wave equation emerges and how the solutions can be put in an especially simple form by an appropriate gauge choice. Using standard tools of general relativity such as the geodesic equation and the equation of the geodesic deviation, how these waves interact with a set of test masses is detailed. The energy and momentum carried by GWs are then computed and discussed. This chapter approaches the problem from a geometric point of view, identifying the energy-momentum tensor of GWs from their effect on the background curvature. Finally, GW propagation in curved space is discussed.

*Ta-Pei Cheng*

- Published in print:
- 2009
- Published Online:
- February 2010
- ISBN:
- 9780199573639
- eISBN:
- 9780191722448
- Item type:
- chapter

- Publisher:
- Oxford University Press
- DOI:
- 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199573639.003.0015
- Subject:
- Physics, Particle Physics / Astrophysics / Cosmology

In the weak-field limit Einstein's equation can be linearized and it takes on form of the familiar wave equation. Gravitational waves may be viewed as ripples of curvature propagating in a background ...
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In the weak-field limit Einstein's equation can be linearized and it takes on form of the familiar wave equation. Gravitational waves may be viewed as ripples of curvature propagating in a background of flat spacetime. The strategy of detecting such tidal forces by a gravitational wave interferometer is outlined. The rate of energy loss due to the quadrupole radiation by a circulating binary system is calculated, and found in excellent agreement with the observed orbit decay rate of the Hulse-Taylor binary pulsar.Less

In the weak-field limit Einstein's equation can be linearized and it takes on form of the familiar wave equation. Gravitational waves may be viewed as ripples of curvature propagating in a background of flat spacetime. The strategy of detecting such tidal forces by a gravitational wave interferometer is outlined. The rate of energy loss due to the quadrupole radiation by a circulating binary system is calculated, and found in excellent agreement with the observed orbit decay rate of the Hulse-Taylor binary pulsar.