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I Light deflection and geodesics

  1. Apr 7, 2016 #1
    It is known that light beam bends near massive body and the object sendind deflected the beam is seen in shifted position.
    pic1png_1280422_21445693.png
    Now about spacetime curvature. As I undestand the things are like that:
    http://i11.pixs.ru/storage/3/3/4/pic2png_7037348_21446334.png [Broken]
    The question is why are geodesics in left side not the same as in right? So I'd expect this situation
    http://i10.pixs.ru/storage/4/5/6/pic3png_9235518_21446456.png [Broken]
    So that we can see objects before the body without shifting
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 7, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Apr 7, 2016 #2

    PeroK

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    You mean that everything must move "horizontally" in flat spacetime?
     
  4. Apr 7, 2016 #3
    I mean that after passing curved region light has to return to flat region with the same straight geodesic as it was before the curved one. I depict the red horizontal line as one geodesic and it just bends in near the body and has to get straight again in flat region. Where am I wrong?
     
  5. Apr 7, 2016 #4

    Orodruin

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    A geodesic is a straight line, the line you have drawn is significantly curved in the flat region. In the flat region, the line is straight in both cases in the first two figures.
     
  6. Apr 7, 2016 #5

    PeroK

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    Why in the same direction as before? Why can't it just continue in a straight line?

    If a particle is moving in a straight line and you deflect it, it moves in a new straight line. It doesn't curve back to its original direction.
     
  7. Apr 7, 2016 #6
    There can be many straight line geodesics in flat space.
     
  8. Apr 7, 2016 #7
    I am sorry.There must be no curved
     
  9. Apr 7, 2016 #8
    Thanks, guys for your replies. So when there is no curvature the path between two points i.e. geodesic is straight line
    pic4.png
    If we place a massive body in center the geodesic will be curved
    pic5.png
    But actually we see that light appears in point C
    pic6.png
    And we see an object that is in A as if it was above point A.
    So where is misconception?
     
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2016
  10. Apr 7, 2016 #9

    Orodruin

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    Your curved line in the middle figure (and in the beginning of the lower one) does not follow how the curvature actually bends the light. Part of your misconception probably stems from that your "curved" region seems like a slab rather than a spherically symmetric region.

    Edit: Also, it is not as easy as declaring a part of your space-time to be flat and another to be curved - there is a gradual change from small curvature to large curvature.
     
  11. Apr 8, 2016 #10

    A.T.

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    You seem to misunderstand how geodesics on curved surfaces work. Have a look at section 2 in this link:

    http://demoweb.physics.ucla.edu/content/10-curved-spacetime

    Note that this spatial curvature explains only half of the light bending. The other half involves the time dimension. But the pictures under 2 give you a good idea how you can model geodesics, by approximating the curved surface with flat pieces.
     
  12. Apr 8, 2016 #11
    So from the second picture in your link it appears that if there is curvature instead of light moving to green line:
    pic7.png
    it moves more under the green line:
    pic8.png
    So it seems that there is a break of geodesic
    Or another situation when right flat region moves down and there is no break with green line
    pic9.png
    But is that movement possible?
    Sorry guys for inaccurate pictures
     
  13. Apr 8, 2016 #12

    jbriggs444

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    No. It is not that the light is offset downwards. It is curved downwards. It does not retain its original direction.

    To be more precise, it does always retain its direction at every infinitesimal step along its path. However, the curvature of space-time means that the incrementally straight path seems to curve when judged against the asymptotically flat space-time far from the region of curvature.
     
  14. Apr 8, 2016 #13

    stevendaryl

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    But that's not true. It won't return to the "same" geodesic. Here's an exaggerated picture of the bending of light around the sun:
    geodesics1.jpg
    Passing near the sun causes the light ray to change directions.
     
  15. Apr 8, 2016 #14
    And the direction change is caused by spatial or time curvature?
     
  16. Apr 8, 2016 #15

    A.T.

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    Your pictures have no intrinsic curvature, because they are flat. Try to find a real surface with a bump (or dent). Then take adhesive tape and stick it along one side of the bump, without stretching or folding the tape edges (keep it locally straight like a geodesic is).
     
  17. Apr 8, 2016 #16

    A.T.

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    Both, but you cannot show that many dimensions in one picture.
     
  18. Apr 8, 2016 #17

    PeroK

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    Apart from the fact that it's the path of light being bent, this is no different from classical gravitation. The reasons for the gravity are different, but the paths followed by particles are essentially the same. Geodesics in flat spacetime are straight lines: all straight lines. Forget about A' for the moment, the path A-B is just a curved path about a gravitational body that straightens out as the gravitational attraction reduces. If that were an asteroid following the path A-B, there is nothing that is going to change its direction at B back to the original direction. Would you really expect an asteroid to do a 90° turn at B to get itself back on its original course?

    I think you're getting yourself all confused about something that is just elementary geometry.
     
  19. Apr 8, 2016 #18
    Do I misunderstand something? Intrinsic curvature needs no higher dimension so curvature of 2d space can be shown on 2d space

    Well, as far as I see if you are getting farther from B to the left the shifted picture A' will be getting closer to A?
     
  20. Apr 8, 2016 #19

    PeroK

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    I have no idea what that means.
     
  21. Apr 8, 2016 #20

    stevendaryl

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    The meaning of "curvature" is exactly that the notion the direction of vectors change as you move around. In the picture below, I've drawn two different paths that take you from point B to point A. Starting at point B, we pick a direction, as shown by the little arrow near B. If you follow the bold path, and keep the little arrow pointing what you think of as "the same direction" all along the path, you end up with arrows pointing in two different directions, depending on what path you took. That's what curvature means, mathematically: that the notion of two arrows pointing in the "same direction" is path dependent.

    geodesics2.jpg
     
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