Graduate Texts in Physics

General Relativity

Authors: Straumann, Norbert

  • Provides a complete revision and extension of the first edition
  • ‘General Relativity and Relativistic Astrophysics’ with a whole new chapter on cosmology
  • The book provides a comprehensive and timely introduction to general relativity, with a thorough development of its foundations and a rich body of applications
  • Whenever helpful in clarifying conceptual issues or in providing computational tools, the powerful intrinsic calculus on manifolds, developed in an extensive separate part, is made use of
  • Although the book addresses mainly physicists, large parts should also be interesting and accessible to mathematicians
  • Gives a comprehensive introduction to the foundations of general relativity and some of its major applications in astrophysics and cosmology
  • Covers all the required differential geometric tools
  • Quotes useful general sources on mathematical, physical, and historical subjects
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eBook $69.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5410-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
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  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5409-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $99.00
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  • ISBN 978-94-007-9954-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Rent the ebook  
  • Rental duration: 1 or 6 month
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About this Textbook

This book provides a completely revised and expanded version of the previous classic edition ‘General Relativity and Relativistic Astrophysics’. In Part I the foundations of general relativity are thoroughly developed, while Part II is devoted to tests of general relativity and many of its applications. Binary pulsars – our best laboratories for general relativity – are studied in considerable detail. An introduction to gravitational lensing theory is included as well, so as to make the current literature on the subject accessible to readers. Considerable attention is devoted to the study of compact objects, especially to black holes. This includes a detailed derivation of the Kerr solution, Israel’s proof of his uniqueness theorem, and a derivation of the basic laws of black hole physics. Part II ends with Witten’s proof of the positive energy theorem, which is presented in detail, together with the required tools on spin structures and spinor analysis. In Part III, all of the differential geometric tools required are developed in detail. A great deal of effort went into refining and improving the text for the new edition. New material has been added, including a chapter on cosmology. The book addresses undergraduate and graduate students in physics, astrophysics and mathematics. It utilizes a very well structured approach, which should help it continue to be a standard work for a modern treatment of gravitational physics. The clear presentation of differential geometry also makes it useful for work on string theory and other fields of physics, classical as well as quantum.

About the authors

Norbert Straumann (born 6 August 1936 in Niedererlinsbach) is a Swiss physicist.  He attended public schools and studied physics and mathematics at the ETH in Zurich, where his instructors included Heinz Hopf, Res Jost, Wolfgang Pauli, Paul Scherrer, Eduard Stiefel, Walter Heitler, Rolf Nevanlinna and Bartel Leendert van der Waerden. 

In his diploma thesis in 1959, Professor Straumann dealt with the characterization of generalized free fields in the axiomatic field theory, which he wrote under the direction of Res Jost. In 1961 he completed his doctorate under Walter Heitler with a thesis on hyperon and meson mass differences in a non-local field theory. In subsequent years, he was a research associate of Walter Heitler. 

From 1964 to 1965 he was a Fellow at CERN in Geneva, serving as an assistant professor at the University of Zurich. From 1967 to 1968 he taught as an associate professor at Duke University in North Carolina. At that time his focus was on the mass differences for bosons and the current algebra, a forerunner of the modern theory of strong interactions. 

In 1969 he began forming a theory group for the former Swiss Institute for Nuclear Research (now the Paul Scherrer Institute). In the seventies he changed his focus, growing more interested in the theory of gravitation. In this context, he placed great emphasis on the historical aspects of gravity. 

In 1969, Straumann became a professor at the University of Zurich, and the years and decades that followed saw him increasingly involved in major associations. From 1980-1987 he was a member of the Scientific Council at the Swiss National Science Foundation; from 1985-1986 he was a visiting professor at the Institute for Theoretical Physics at the University of Bern. In 1988 he was a visiting professor in Amsterdam. From 1997-2000 he worked on an advisory board of the Albert Einstein Institute in Potsdam.

In 2001 he retired, and has since written a number of further works on the theory of gravitation, primarily addressing the classic fields of theoretical physics (mechanics, electrodynamics, thermodynamics and kinetic theory, statistical mechanics, special relativity, general relativity and astrophysics, cosmology and black holes). His lecture notes, which have partly been published in book form, influenced a whole generation of students and researchers at the University of Zurich.

In recognition of his achievements, in 2005 Norbert Straumann was awarded the title of Doctor Philosophiae Honoris Causa from the University of Bern.

Reviews

From the reviews of the second edition:

“Straumann’s book joins the roster of a number of currently available introductions to general relativity written for the beginning graduate student … . Straumann’s book offers a thorough, modern introduction to GR with unrivaled mathematical integrity. It is written so clearly that it can be used quite profitably for independent study. I teach a one-year undergraduate sequence in differential geometry and general relativity … . Straumann’s book will certainly be my choice for primary course text.” (Amazon.com, December, 2012)

Table of contents (16 chapters)

  • Introduction

    Straumann, Norbert

    Pages 3-6

  • Physics in External Gravitational Fields

    Straumann, Norbert

    Pages 7-63

  • Einstein’s Field Equations

    Straumann, Norbert

    Pages 65-154

  • The Schwarzschild Solution and Classical Tests of General Relativity

    Straumann, Norbert

    Pages 157-226

  • Weak Gravitational Fields

    Straumann, Norbert

    Pages 227-305

Buy this book

eBook $69.99
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5410-2
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-007-5409-6
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-94-007-9954-7
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Rent the ebook  
  • Rental duration: 1 or 6 month
  • low-cost access
  • online reader with highlighting and note-making option
  • can be used across all devices
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
General Relativity
Authors
Series Title
Graduate Texts in Physics
Copyright
2013
Publisher
Springer Netherlands
Copyright Holder
Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht
eBook ISBN
978-94-007-5410-2
DOI
10.1007/978-94-007-5410-2
Hardcover ISBN
978-94-007-5409-6
Softcover ISBN
978-94-007-9954-7
Series ISSN
1868-4513
Edition Number
2
Number of Pages
XX, 736
Topics