Relativity and the Dimensionality of the World by Vesselin PetkovRelativity and the Dimensionality of the World by Vesselin Petkov

Relativity and the Dimensionality of the World

byVesselin Petkov

Paperback | November 13, 2010

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All physicists would agree that one of the most fundamental problems of the 21st century physics is the dimensionality of the world. In the four-dimensional world of Minkowski (or Minkowski spacetime) the most challenging problem is the nature of the temporal dimension. In Minkowski spacetime it is merely one of the four dimensions, which means that it is entirely given like the other three spacial dimensions. If the temporal dimension were not given in its entirety and only one constantly changing moment of it existed, Minkowski spacetime would be reduced to the ordinary three-dimensional space.

But if the physical world, represented by Minkowski spacetime, is indeed four-dimensional with time being the fourth dimension, then such a world is drastically different from its image based on our perceptions. Minkowski four-dimensional world is a block Universe, a frozen world in which nothing happens since all moments of time are given 'at once', which means that physical bodies are four-dimensional worldtubes containing the whole histories in time of the three-dimensional bodies of our everyday experience. The implications of a real Minkowski world for physics itself and especially for our world view are enormous.

The main focus of this volume is the question: is spacetime nothing more than a mathematical space (which describes the evolution in time of the ordinary three-dimensional world) or is it a mathematical model of a real four-dimensional world with time entirely given as the fourth dimension? It contains fourteen invited papers which either directly address the main question of the nature of spacetime or explore issues related to it.

Title:Relativity and the Dimensionality of the WorldFormat:PaperbackDimensions:277 pagesPublished:November 13, 2010Publisher:Springer-Verlag/Sci-Tech/TradeLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:9048176069

ISBN - 13:9789048176069


Table of Contents

Preface 1. The Meaning of Dimensions; Paul Wesson. 2. Some Remarks on the Space-Times of Newton and Einstein; Graham Hall. 3. The adventures of Spacetime; Orfeu Bertolami. 4. Physics in the Real Universe: Time and Spacetime; George F. R. Ellis. 5. The Real World and Spacetime; Hans C. Ohanian. 6. Four-dimensional Reality and Determinism: an Answer to Stein; Wim Rietdijk. 7. Relativity, Dimensionality, and Existence; Vesselin Petkov. 8. Canonical Relativity and the Dimensionality of the World; Martin Bojowald. 9. Relativity theory does not imply that the future already exists: a counterexample; Rafael D. Sorkin. 10. Absolute Being versus Relative Becoming; Joy Christian. 11. An Argument for 4D Blockworld from a Geometric Interpretation of Non-relativistic Quantum Mechanics; Michael Silberstein, W.M. Stuckey, and Michael Cifone. 12. Spacetime: Arena or Reality? H. I. Arcos and J. G. Pereira. 13. Dynamical emergence of instantaneous 3-spaces in a class of models of general relativity; Luca Lusanna and Massimo Pauri. 14. Lorentzian spacetimes from Parabolic and Elliptic systems of PDEs; Carlos Barceló.

Editorial Reviews

Aus den Rezensionen:". Dem Physiker und Philosophen Vesselin Petkov . ist es wie kaum einem anderen zu verdanken, die Raumzeit-Problematik in der Diskussion zu halten. Passend zum hundertjährigen Jubiläum der Minkowski-Rede hat er einen Band herausgegeben, in dem 18 hochkarätige Autoren das Problem von der 'Relativity and the Dimensionality of the World' aus verschiedenen Perspektiven angehen. Wer sich tiefer in die Thematik einlesen möchte, kommt an diesem Buch nicht vorbei ." (in: Das Science Fiction Jahr 2008, 2008, S. 780 f.)