Conference “New Frontiers in Numerical Relativity” from 17 to 21 July 2006 at the Albert Einstein Institute

Significant progress towards the solution of the Einstein equations

July 13, 2006

With his general theory of relativity, Albert Einstein was the first to show that gravitational fields influence the structure of space and time. At present, this has still unmanageable consequences for the mathematical solution of his equations. Generations of scientists have thus already reached the limits of what can be thought and calculated.

On the way to crossing these limits and breaking new ground, the scientists of the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics invite you to the workshop:

"New Frontiers in Numerical Relativity"
from 17 to 21 July 2006
at the Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute)
Am Mühlenberg 1, 14476 Potsdam-Golm

All currently leading scientists in the field of numerical relativity will participate. The most prominent speaker will be James York from Cornell University, USA.

You are also cordially invited to his keynote talk:

"Dynamical Principles of General Relativity"
on Thursday, July 20 at 19:00
at the Palace Theatre in the New Palace, Am Neuen Palais, 14471 Potsdam

An example of the challenges of Einstein's equations: black holes

Near singularities, the structural properties of spacetime change so rapidly that any numerical solution strategy will run into problems if it tries to resolve these variations with finite precision.

But in recent months and years there has been - sometimes unexpected - dramatic progress

Thanks to this, numerical relativity is now able to calculate the first gravitational waveforms for the expected strongest astrophysical sources. Among other things, they have led to a better description of the formation of black holes.

The greatest challenges at present

Despite the progress made, the description of matter within the framework of general relativity is still very idealised - it is described as an ideal fluid without internal friction. Many physical effects are not considered. Only recently have some scientists begun to consider, for example, the influence of magnetic fields, which are assumed to play an important role. In addition, microphysics is beginning to be treated more realistically, so that the properties of matter under the extreme conditions inside compact stars can be better described. These developments are above all possible due to larger available computer capacities.

Other Interesting Articles

Go to Editor View