Instants in physics – point mechanics and general relativity

Por • 9 jun, 2013 • Sección: Filosofía

Domenico Giulini

Abstract: Theories in physics usually do not address »the present» or »the now». However, they usually have a precise notion of an »instant» (or state). I review how this notion appears in relational point mechanics and how it suffices to determine durations – a fact that is often ignored in modern presentations of analytical dynamics. An analogous discussion is attempted for General Relativity. Finally I critically remark on the difference between relationalism in point mechanics and field theory and the problematic foundational dependencies between fields and spacetime.

arXiv:1306.0338v1 [physics.hist-ph]

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