Posted: Mar 02, 2011 2:16 am
by Xaihe
Thanks everyone. So does this mean that the equivalence principle can't be applied to the center of a gravitational well?

Wikipedia wrote:In the physics of general relativity, the equivalence principle refers to several related concepts dealing with the equivalence of gravitational and inertial mass, and to Albert Einstein's assertion that the gravitational "force" as experienced locally while standing on a massive body (such as the Earth) is actually the same as the pseudo-force experienced by an observer in a non-inertial (accelerated) frame of reference.

It makes me wonder about assumptions though. Like the equivalence principle rests on assumptions for simplification, does the math include assumptions (most models have assumptions, after all) that are still valid when applied to the center of gravitational wells? :shifty: If spacetime is still heavily curved near the center, does this represent another singularity at the center (point) or is it my own failings of imagination that I can't imagine a curved point?

I googled a bit (which I probably should've done more thoroughly before I started the thread) and found that this discussion has been had on other forums as well, and someone suggested experiments to verify.