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kaka
Joined: 12 Aug 2010 Posts: 2 Location: india

Posted: Sun Aug 22, 2010 11:43 am Post subject: general theory of relativity 


is the existence of four dimensional space physically real 

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hepcj Site Admin
Joined: 23 Jun 2007 Posts: 125

Posted: Sun Aug 22, 2010 10:00 pm Post subject: 


I am not an expert on relativity but when you say real in what sense do you mean? The effects predicted by general relativity and special relativity such as mass shaping space and time dilation are real effects that we can observe experimentally. In situations when we need to use the theory of relativity, space and time can no longer be considered separately because the speed of light is constant. Therefore it is helpful to define an event at a point in space occurring at a certain time relative to some reference frame.
Using extra dimensions is often useful, attempts at unified theories use higher dimensional spaces in which there are higher spatial dimensions which are hidden.
Mathematically, we can define spaces in which there are any number of dimensions. We can even define spaces in which there are an infinite number of dimensions.
The mathematics in physics is not physics of reality but a simplified model that helps us understand the world. It never ceases to amaze me that the world can be described in mathematical terms and that mathematical description can make predictions about the physical world. 

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