What is Frame dragging: Definition and 43 Discussions

Frame-dragging is an effect on spacetime, predicted by Albert Einstein's general theory of relativity, that is due to non-static stationary distributions of mass–energy. A stationary field is one that is in a steady state, but the masses causing that field may be non-static ⁠— rotating, for instance. More generally, the subject that deals with the effects caused by mass–energy currents is known as gravitoelectromagnetism, which is analogous to the magnetism of classical electromagnetism.
The first frame-dragging effect was derived in 1918, in the framework of general relativity, by the Austrian physicists Josef Lense and Hans Thirring, and is also known as the Lense–Thirring effect. They predicted that the rotation of a massive object would distort the spacetime metric, making the orbit of a nearby test particle precess. This does not happen in Newtonian mechanics for which the gravitational field of a body depends only on its mass, not on its rotation. The Lense–Thirring effect is very small – about one part in a few trillion. To detect it, it is necessary to examine a very massive object, or build an instrument that is very sensitive.
In 2015, new general-relativistic extensions of Newtonian rotation laws were formulated to describe geometric dragging of frames which incorporates a newly discovered antidragging effect.

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  1. e2m2a

    B Frame Dragging Rate: Mass Proportionality?

    Curious about frame dragging. Is the rate at which frame dragging occurs proportional to mass? For example, when the Earth rotates it has been confirmed space drags with the earth. I assume the rate is very small compared to the rotation rate of the earth. However, if the mass of the Earth...
  2. Robert Friz

    I Frame Dragging Around Spinning Black Holes: Implications

    Frame dragging around a spinning black hole is generally accepted in cosmology. Does the frame dragging result solely in space-time rotating forever around the black hole, or does frame dragging ultimately result in space-time vectoring towards and into the black hole? An additional question...
  3. RonH

    B Could frame dragging explain dark matter on a large scale?

    This is first post so bear with me. This might be totally a blue sky thought ( ok it almost assuredly is ). But when reading about the frame dragging near black holes I wondered if this effect might also be seen ( at a far lower intensity ) in the motion of galaxies. Not suggesting that...
  4. TheDoctor6000

    B Frame Dragging: Q&A for Time Travelers

    Moderator's note: offshoot from https://www.physicsforums.com/threads/what-is-frame-dragging.762986/ I am trying to understand time travel and i can understand Tipler Cylinders and the cosmic string theory that assist the possibility of time travel but I was looking at Frame dragging because...
  5. e2m2a

    I Exploring Frame Dragging & Its Impact on Space: Q&A

    I have some questions about space, inertia and frame-dragging that I can’t find anywhere on the internet. The papers that I have found that deal with the subject are often couched in advanced mathematics, so that I can’t get an intuitive grasp of the phenomenon. I would appreciate if...
  6. T

    I Confusion about Frame Dragging

    Wiki here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frame-dragging Claims that: It sounds strange. What happens if an observer is hovering in equatorial plane of the rotating black hole, few meters above the ergosphere? Now an observer starts to release a chain, very slowly. Wiki claims that a chain will...
  7. S

    I Frame Dragging Direction for Outward Moving Test Mass

    I have the following question considering frame dragging: A test mass starting at rest near a rotating mass or with an initial velocity pointing towards the center of the rotating mass will be deflected in such a way that it begins to move around the mass in the rotational direction. This is...
  8. I

    Is inertia the total gravitational forces of the Universe?

    Hi all I read a question on this subject from some time ago but was not satisfied with the clarity of the answer and in the light of recent experimental results I wish to clarify my understanding of this ancient scientific question. What is the cause of Inertia? So is inertia simply the total...
  9. Buckethead

    B Frame dragging and co-rotating shells

    If I understand correctly, a massive enough hollow sphere rotating in space will rotate the minkowski spacetime inside the shell such that a pair of balls held together by a string and rotating around their mutual center and at the same angular velocity as the shell will experience no (or at...
  10. WannabeNewton

    Frame dragging slowly rotating shell

    I was given a problem recently that I had to solve and I haven't been able to get a fully satisfactory conceptual grasp of a certain aspect of it. Consider the slowly rotating Kerr solution ##ds^2 = -\alpha^2 dt^2 + \alpha^{-2}dr^2 + r^2d\Omega^2 - \frac{4Ma}{r}\sin^2\theta dt d\phi + O(a^2)##...
  11. S

    Doubt about Frame Dragging and planetary revolution

    Our sun rotates in counter clockwise direction and hence frame dragging will be also in that direction. Suppose if we put a satellite in sun's orbit (almost circular) to revolve in opposite direction to the sun's spin, what would happen to the orbit of the satellite? Would it fall into the sun?
  12. wolram

    Granular space time and frame dragging

    If there were only one rotating massive body and a detector in the universe, would the detector be able to detect that body due to frame dragging, i am imagining the body acting on granular space time akin to a whirlpool, were space time is disturbed in a spiral motion. I am not talking about...
  13. Greg Bernhardt

    Frame Dragging: Definition & Equations

    Definition/Summary Einstein's theory of general relativity predicts rotating objects drag spacetime around themselves in a phenomenon referred to as frame-dragging or the Lense-Thirring effect. This effect is also sometimes referred to as Gravitomagnetism- Extract from wikipedia- 'This...
  14. K

    Understanding Frame Dragging: Explanation and Effects

    What is frame dragging?
  15. F

    Is frame dragging the same as torsion?

    Is frame dragging in GR the same as torsion in curved spacetime?
  16. M

    Frame Dragging & Galactic Rotation: Implications for AGN & Black Holes

    Hi, I am interested in the issue of frame dragging used in a number of galactic rotation models. However, I wanted to first make sure that I have a better understanding the relativistic implications of frame dragging. While the issue of galactic rotation is not the subject of this thread, it is...
  17. H

    How does frame dragging cause a stick to rotate in the opposite direction?

    Now, I've read that frame dragging will cause an effect likened to planetary gears, where the spinning source is the sun gear and the object is the planetary gear. Here's where I get confused. Suppose you had a straight meter stick aimed directly at a massive rotating object from an...
  18. E

    Frame Dragging Explained: Dimensions, Schwarzschild Radius, Metrics & Angles

    Can someone please explain to me (it can only be brief, I'll try to do the dirty work myself ^.^): Frame dragging in terms of: What is a frame, What are it's dimensions (2d/3d(x,y,z)) What does this have in relation to the Schwarzschild radius in terms of astrophysics; With that...
  19. H

    Does Galactic Rotation Cause Frame Dragging?

    Do galaxies produce measurable/significant frame dragging effects by their rotation? I would think frame dragging depends on the mass and speed of rotation... Are such effects only felt at the boundary between rotating gravitational fields and flatter space, i.e. the edge of the milky way? Or...
  20. I

    Frame Dragging & Black Holes: CTC Possibility?

    Can frame dragging around a black hole induce closed timelike curves (CTC)?
  21. T

    Understanding Frame Dragging: Exploring the Effects of Black Hole Rotation

    Im having some trouble wrapping my head around this concept. I don't have the math background i really need to fully understand it which i suppose is causing my confusion. I picture a black hole. some distance outside of the Event horizion, i have a man floating in space. The black hole is...
  22. P

    Whoosh - linear frame dragging papers?

    I'm wondering if there are any papers that consider the effect of a rapidly moving mass on a spinning gyroscope. The basic idea is you have some gyroscope, pointing at a distant "guide star", a "whoosh" as a massive relativistic object moves by, and then you look to see if your gyroscope is...
  23. narrator

    Frame dragging and Light speed

    From http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frame-dragging" : "Under the Lense–Thirring effect, the frame of reference in which a clock ticks the fastest is one which is rotating around the object as viewed by a distant observer. This also means that light traveling in the direction of rotation of the...
  24. D

    Frame dragging from a light beam

    Does light beam create linear frame fragging around it? If answer is positive, can light become 'tired' going thru the universe and exchanging the momentum with the environment via frame dragging?
  25. J

    General Relativity: Frame Dragging in Spherical Shell

    Homework Statement An isolated, thin, rigid, spherical shell has mass M and radius R. If the shell is set slowly spinning with angular momentum J, show that inertial frames within the shell rotate at angular velocity w with respect to an observer at rest at infinity, where: w=2GJ/(c^2*R^3)...
  26. T

    Limits of Frame Dragging: Can Objects Create Their Own Event Horizons?

    Objects smaller than black holes, by mass can still drag space along with their rotation. I picture this like a plate of Spaghetti there the pasta is radiating out from the center of the plate. But let's say its rubbery spaghetti and can stratch. And its attached at one end to the outer egde of...
  27. I

    Frame dragging around a rotating black hole.

    Hi: I’m a new member to this forum. I’m looking at the behavior of frame dragging around a rotating black hole. It seems to me that frame dragging should be zero about a rotating black hole’s axis of rotation, but should be at a maximum at the equator (i.e. 90 degrees from its axis of...
  28. jaketodd

    Trying to understand linear frame dragging

    See "linear frame dragging" here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frame-dragging Two small masses, initially the same distance from a large mass. One of the small masses has a propulsion system that keeps it at a constant distance from the large mass. The other small mass has no propulsion...
  29. S

    Is the Frame Dragging Effect Measurable on High-RPM Massive Rotating Discs?

    Hi just a quick question, I've been searching online to find out if there is any measurable frame dragging effect on a high rpm massive rotating disc, but havnt been able to find anything. I've read a bit about gravity probe B but in my limited understanding of the effect and the physics around...
  30. N

    Frame dragging and absolute rotation

    I'm trying to wrap my head around how rotational frame dragging affects the centrifugal force of a massive, rotating body and was hoping someone could explain this concept to me better. If I am confused on any of the points below please let me know. It is my understanding that there is no...
  31. tiny-tim

    Exploring Linear Frame Dragging in the Context of General Relativity

    "Linear frame dragging"? wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Frame_Dragging#Frame_dragging_effects says: (Naty1 has drawn attention to this to this in a Library comment.) What is this referring to? Is it a generally accepted terminology, or is it just wikipedia's wishful...
  32. I

    Gravity Probe B and 'frame dragging'

    Am I right in assuming that Gravity Probe B has proved that the rotation of the Earth (@~465metres /sec.) 'swirls' space-time in the same sort of way that a rotating ball will swirl a fluid? I ask because if this is the case, then the forward motion of the Earth (@~360km/sec.) must also...
  33. stevebd1

    Black holes, frame dragging and the effect on gravity

    In regard of frame-dragging within the ergosphere of a rotating black hole, what effect would this have on gravity? It seems accepted that with frame dragging (or lense-thirring), the fabric of space is dragged around with the black hole but that light within the ergosphere still travels at...
  34. C

    Frame dragging effects on speed of light

    I had a question that I was hoping someone could answer for me. If light passes next to a massive rotating object such as a black hole, would the affects of frame dragging cause a blue shift or would the light essentialy travel at a speed faster than the C?
  35. R

    A frame dragging experiment in an accelerated reference frame

    Hi, I was thinking about an experiment that might demonstrate frame dragging via the equivalence principle. The apparatus consists of a rotating massive cylindrical shell within a vacuum. Near the inside and the outside of the shell exist two gyroscopes with their axis both...
  36. tony873004

    Is Frame Dragging an Example of a Gravity Wave?

    Is Frame Dragging an Example of a Gravity Wave?
  37. ohwilleke

    LAGEOS confirms frame dragging.

    I haven't seen it posted anywhere, but unsurprisingly LAGEOS 1 and LAGEOS 2 have confirmed the frame dragging predicted by GR in the solar system within 99% of the predicted value. The margin of error was +/- 5%. http://www.spacetoday.net/Summary/2609
  38. Labguy

    Has Frame Dragging Been Scientifically Proven?

    I presume that you have seen this? http://www.reuters.com/newsArticle.jhtml?type=topNews&storyID=6575621
  39. S

    Has Gravity Probe B Confirmed Frame Dragging?

    News story this morning. http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6290610/. Effect detected by observing two satellites over a long time.
  40. DrChinese

    Frame Dragging Detected per GR

    From MSNBC: GR confirmed again as gravity measurements reflect the predicted space-time dragging effect caused by spinning objects. A research team analyzed millions of laser signals bounced off two satellites, called LAGEOS and LAGEOS 2. Both are highly reflective spheres not designed to do...
  41. K

    How Does Earth's Rotation Speed Influence Frame Dragging Effects?

    Is there a simple mathematical relation between the speed at which the Earth spins and the magnitude of the frame-dragging effect?
  42. Antonio Lao

    What's Mathematics of Frame Dragging ?

    What's Mathematics of Frame Dragging ? Since 1960, scientists have suggested that general relativity's prediction of frame dragging can be tested. The recent launch of Gravity Probe B satellite was to do this test. Can someone help me find the math behind this test? Edits: Found some...
  43. Y

    Frame dragging by a black hole

    I just read in a popular magazine about the satellite to be launched in order to measure the frame dragging by a spinning Earth as predicted by General Relativity. Can some one tell or give me a reference for the frame dragging expected for a black hole, either spinning or not?