What kind of math is needed to understand relativity

  • Thread starter bennington
  • Start date
  • #1
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Main Question or Discussion Point

Do I need to know calculus? Or do I need to know differential equations? Do both of the theories even use the same mathematics? I really want to know more about relativity, and learning about the math behind it would be helpful.
 

Answers and Replies

  • #2
pam
455
1
Much of special relativity requires only algebra. Matrices would help.
General relativity requires everything, which is why Einstein needed math helpers.
 
  • #3
mathman
Science Advisor
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414
For general relativity you need calculus and differential geometry.
 
  • #4
410
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Not technically math, but classical mechanics at the level of variational principle would be helpful.
 

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