Albert Einstein Institute launches a new internet portal that explains relativity
Confused by curved spaces? Baffled by black holes? A new internet portal provides up-to-date and easily understood information about Einstein's ideas and their impact on current research. It will be launched 100 years after Albert Einstein submitted his publication „Ist die Trägheit eines Körpers von seinem Energiegehalt abhängig? “ – better known as E=mc2. Einstein Online s an outreach project of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute), Potsdam, Germany. It is available in English and German language.
In the area "Elementary Einstein" you will find introductory texts on Einstein's theories of relativity and their coolest applications - from ripples in space-time to cosmology, from curved space to black holes. "For many people, Einstein's relativity is still surrounded by that mystic cloak of incomprehensibility" says Elke Müller, supervising editor of Einstein-Online, "but the basic ideas are really rather simple. You certainly do not need to have studied advanced math to get an idea of what relativity is about."
In addition, a variety of "Spotlights on relativity" provide up-to-date information on specific aspects or applications of Einstein's physics, from extra dimensions to the gravitational wave music of neutron stars. Markus Pössel, the project's editor: "A number of our spotlights are by scientists writing about their own research. And we are hoping to expand this section much further over the next few months."
As glossary-cum-index, the web-site also features a relativistic dictionary with more than 250 entries. The German version of the portal has been online since January 2005.
The Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute)
Since its foundation in 1995, the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics has established itself as a leading international research center. The research program covers the entire spectrum of gravitational physics: from Albert Einstein's General Theory of Relativity to quantum gravity and string theory. Thus the "Quantum Gravity and Unified Theories" division is concerned with the unification of both fundamental theories of physics - general relativity and quantum mechanics - into a theory of quantum gravity. The "Astrophysical Relativity" division concentrates on gravitational wave research, black holes and the numerical solutions of Einstein's equations. The "Geometric Analysis and Gravitation" division is studying the physical foundations and mathematical methods of Einstein's theory of space-time and gravitation. The “Laser Interferometry and Gravitational Wave Astronomy” division is developing gravitational wave detectors – both earthbound and in space: they will make possible a new field of astronomical research. The union of these important research fields in one institute is unique in the world.
Bernard F. Schutz: Gravity from the ground up, Cambridge University Press 2004