The Positive Mass Theorem

  • Norbert Straumann
Part of the Texts and Monographs in Physics book series (TMP)


We begin by repeating some material treated at various places in earlier chapters. — In Newtonian gravity theory the total energy of a system can be indefinitely negative. (For the critical masses of the white dwarfs, discussed in Sect. 6.2, the total energy becomes −∞.) This is not the case in GR. It is impossible to construct an object out of ordinary matter, i.e., matter with positive local energy density, whose total energy (including gravitational contributions) is negative. This is roughly the content of the positive energy theorem.


Black Hole Apparent Horizon Lorentz Manifold Spacelike Hypersurface Weyl Spinor 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Norbert Straumann
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Theoretische PhysikUniversität ZurichZurichSwitzerland

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