[1208.3034] Visualizing Spacetime Curvature via Frame-Drag Vortexes and Tidal Tendexes II. Stationary Black Holes

Authors: Fan Zhang, Aaron Zimmerman, David A. Nichols, Yanbei Chen, Geoffrey Lovelace, Keith D. Matthews, Robert Owen, Kip S. Thorne

Date: 15 Aug 2012

Abstract: When one splits spacetime into space plus time, the Weyl curvature tensor (which equals the Riemann tensor in vacuum) splits into two spatial, symmetric, traceless tensors: the tidal field $E$, which produces tidal forces, and the frame-drag field $B$, which produces differential frame dragging. In recent papers, we and colleagues have introduced ways to visualize these two fields: tidal tendex lines (integral curves of the three eigenvector fields of $E$) and their tendicities (eigenvalues of these eigenvector fields); and the corresponding entities for the frame-drag field: frame-drag vortex lines and their vorticities. These entities fully characterize the vacuum Riemann tensor. In this paper, we compute and depict the tendex and vortex lines, and their tendicities and vorticities, outside the horizons of stationary (Schwarzschild and Kerr) black holes; and we introduce and depict the black holes' horizon tendicity and vorticity (the normal-normal components of $E$ and $B$ on the horizon). For Schwarzschild and Kerr black holes, the horizon tendicity is proportional to the horizon's intrinsic scalar curvature, and the horizon vorticity is proportional to an extrinsic scalar curvature. We show that, for horizon-penetrating time slices, all these entities ($E$, $B$, the tendex lines and vortex lines, the lines' tendicities and vorticities, and the horizon tendicities and vorticities) are affected only weakly by changes of slicing and changes of spatial coordinates, within those slicing and coordinate choices that are commonly used for black holes. [Abstract is abbreviated.]

abs pdf

Aug 15, 2012

1208.3034 (/preprints)
2012-08-15, 22:35 [edit]


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