Frame-dragging vortexes and tidal tendexes attached to colliding black holes: Visualizing the curvature of spacetime

Owen R. ; Brink J. ; Chen Y. ; Kaplan J.D. ; Lovelace G. ; Matthews K.D. ; Nichols D.A. ; Scheel M.A. ; Zhang F. ; Zimmerman A. ; Thorne K.S. (2011)


When one splits spacetime into space plus time, the spacetime curvature (Weyl tensor) gets split into an "electric" part Ejk that describes tidal gravity and a "magnetic" part Bjk that describes differential dragging of inertial frames. We introduce tools for visualizing Bjk (frame-drag vortex lines, their vorticity, and vortexes) and Ejk (tidal tendex lines, their tendicity, and tendexes) and also visualizations of a black-hole horizon's (scalar) vorticity and tendicity. We use these tools to elucidate the nonlinear dynamics of curved spacetime in merging black-hole binaries. © 2011 American Physical Society.

Please refer to this item in SUNScholar by using the following persistent URL:
This item appears in the following collections: