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Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology (Dover Books on Physics) Paperback – January 20, 2011

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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

This landmark study by a distinguished physicist develops three important themes: a coherent and inclusive account of Einstein’s theory of relativity; the extension of thermodynamics to special and general relativity; and the applications of relativistic mechanics and relativistic thermodynamics in the construction and interpretation of cosmological models.
The first three chapters cover the special theory of relativity, in particular the kinematical, mechanical, and electrodynamic consequences of the two postulates of special relativity. Chapter IV develops the close relationships between special relativity and electromagnetic theory, while Chapter V explores less familiar consequences of the theory, including the effect of relativity in providing a natural starting-point for the energy content of thermodynamic systems.
Chapter VI considers the general theory of relativity together with some of its more elementary applications. Included are the principle of covariance, the principle of equivalence, and the hypothesis of Mach, along with other topics. Chapter VII, on relativistic mechanics, is divided into two parts—general mechanical principles and solutions of the field equations. Chapter VIII discusses relativistic electrodynamics, presenting further extensions to general relativity both for the Lorentz electron theory and for the Minkowski macroscopic theory.
Chapter IX deals with relativistic thermodynamics and considers the extension of thermodynamics from special to general relativity, together with its applications. Finally, in Chapter X, the author takes up the application of relativistic mechanics and relativistic thermodynamics to cosmological models.
Among the important features of this study, which set it apart from older texts on relativity, are the extensions of thermodynamics to general relativity, the material on non-static models of the universe, and the treatment of gravitational interaction of light rays and particles.
Throughout, stress is on the physical nature of assumptions and conclusions and the physical significance of their interconnection, rather than mathematical generality or rigor. Several helpful appendices complete the book, including formulae for vector and tensor analysis, useful constants, and symbols for quantities.

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Product Details

  • Series: Dover Books on Physics
  • Paperback: 528 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications (February 17, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0486653838
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486653839
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.4 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,241,607 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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21 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Mark E. Miller on August 19, 2001
Format: Paperback
Originally published in 1934, this Dover reprint covers the early development of cosmology in a rigorous mathematical format. You need to know math through tensor equations (as you would for any rigorous treatment of cosmology), and this probably should not be anyone's first foray into cosmology. For that, see Peebles. Having said that, this gives sidelights present nowhere else, and a fine treatment of some by-passed cosmological models.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 6, 1999
Format: Paperback
This classic book should be on the shelf of every physicist interested in relativity. The exposition is very clear and can be used to fix some ideas. My comments do not include the thermodynamics part, which I'm not competent to review. The cosmological applications are, evidently, severaly outdated, but can be very useful for those interested in the history of the development of observational cosmology.
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Relativity, Thermodynamics and Cosmology (Dover Books on Physics)
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