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### About the Author

**Wolfgang Pauli: The Young Genius**

Wolfgang Pauli (1900-1958), Austrian by birth, was one of the most influential physicists of the twentieth century and winner of the 1945 Nobel Prize in Physics for the discovery of the Pauli exclusion principle in quantum mechanics. His classic work on relativity was first published in Germany in 1921, when Pauli was twenty-one years old. The physicist A. Sommerfeld wrote this in his Preface to the 1921 German edition of Pauli's work:

"In view of the apparently insatiable demand, especially in Germany, for accounts of the Theory of Relativity, both of a popular and of a highly specialized kind, I felt I ought to advise the publishers to arrange for a separate edition of the excellent article by Herr W. Pauli, Jr., which appeared in the *Encyklopadie der mathematischen Wissenschaften*, Vol. V. Although Herr Pauli was still a student at the time he was not only familiar with the most subtle arguments in the Theory of Relativity through his own research work, but was also fully conversant with the literature of the subject."

First translated and published in English in 1958, and reprinted by Dover in 1981, Pauli's *Theory of Relativity* continues to find readers another fifty years later. In 2000, Dover reprinted the six volumes of Pauli's collected lectures on physics which had first been published by MIT: *Electrodynamics* (Volume 1), *Optics and the Theory of Electrons* (Volume 2), *Thermodynamics and the Kinetic Theory of Gases* (Volume 3), *Statistical Mechanics* (Volume 4), *Wave Mechanics* (Volume 5), and *Selected Topics in Field Quantization *(Volume 6).

In 1928, Pauli, not yet thirty years old, was appointed Professor of Theoretical Physics at ETH Zurich where he did much of his most important work. Following Germany's takeover of Austria in 1938, and the outbreak of World War II in 1939, Pauli emigrated to the United States where he was Professor of Theoretical Physics at Princeton. In 1946, he became a naturalized American citizen before returning to Zurich, where he mostly lived for the last decade of his life.

### Table of Contents

Part I. The foundations of the special theory of relativity

1. Historical background (Lorentz, Poincaré, Einstein)

2. The postulate of relativity

3. The postulate of the constancy of the velocity of light. Ritz's and related theories

4. The relativity of simultaneity. Derivation of the Lorentz transformation from the two postulates. Axiomatic nature of the Lorentz transformation

5. Lorentz contraction and time dilatation

6. Einstein's addition theorem for velocities and its application to aberration and the drag coefficient. The Doppler effect

Part II. Mathematical Tools

7. The four-dimensional space-time world (Minkowski)

8. More general transformation groups

9. Tensor calculus for affine transformations

10. Geometrical meaning of the contravariant and covariant components of a vector

11. "Surface" and "volume" tensors. Four-dimensional volumes

12. Dual tensors

13. Transition to Riemannian geometry

14. Parallel displacement of a vector

15. Geodesic lines

16. Space curvature

17. Riemannian coordinates and their applications

18. The special cases of Euclidean geometry and of constant curvature

19. The integral theorems of Gauss and Stokes in a four-dimensional Riemannian manifold

20. Derivation of invariant differential operations, using geodesic components

21. Affine tensors and free vectors

22. Reality relations

23. Infinitesimal coordinate transformations and variational theorems

Part III. Special theory of relativity. Further elaborations

A. Kinematics

24. Four-dimensional representation of the Lorentz transformation

25. The addition theorem for velocities

26. Transformation law for acceleration. Hyperbolic motion

B. Electrodynamics

27. Conservation of charge. Four-current density

28. Covariance of the basic equations of electron theory

29. Ponderomotive forces. Dynamics of the electron

30. Momentum and energy of the electromagnetic field. Differential and integral forms of the conservation laws

31. The invariant action principle of electrodynamics

32. Applications to special cases

a. Integration of the equations for the potential

b. The field of a uniformly moving point charge

c. The field for hyperbolic motion

d. Invariance of the light phase. Reflection at a moving mirror. Radiation pressure

e. The radiation field of a moving dipole

f. Radiation reaction

33. Minkowski's phenomenological electrodynamics of moving bodies

34. Electron-theoretical derivations

35. Energy-momentum tensor and ponderomotive force in phenomenological electrodynamics. Joule heat

36. Applications of the theory

a. The experiments of Rowland, Röntgen, Eichenwald and Wilson

b. Resistance and induction in moving conductors

c. Propagation of light in moving media. The drag coefficient. Airy's experiment

d. Signal velocity and phase velocity in dispersive media

C. Mechanics and general dynamics

37. Equation of motion. Momentum and kinetic energy

38. Relativistic mechanics on a basis independent of electrodynamics

39. Hamilton's principle in relativistic mechanics

40. Generalized coordinates. Canonical form of the equations of motion

41. The inertia of energy

42. General dynamics

43. Transformation of energy and momentum of a system in the presence of external forces

44. Applications to special cases. Trouton and Noble's experiments

45. Hydrodynamics and theory of elasticity

D. Thermodynamics and statistical mechanics

46. Behaviour of the thermodynamical quantities under a Lorentz transformation

47. The principle of least action

48. The application of relativity to statistical mechanics

49. Special cases

a. Black-body radiation in a moving cavity

b. The ideal gas

Part IV. General theory of relativity

50. Historical review, up to Einstein's paper of 1916

51. General formulation of the principle of equivalence. Connection between gravitation and metric

52. The postulate of the general covariance of the physical laws

53. Simple deductions from the principle of equivalence

a. The equations of motion of a point-mass for small velocities and weak gravitational fields

b. The red shift of spectral lines

c. Fermat's principle of least time in static gravitational fields

54. Influence of the gravitational field on material phenomena

55. The action principles for material processes in the presence of gravitational fields

56. The field equations of gravitation

57. Derivation of the gravitational equations from a variational principle

58. Comparison with experiment

a. Newtonian theory as a first approximation

b. Rigorous solution for the gravitational field of a point-mass

c. Perihelion precession of Mercury and the bending of light rays

59. Other special, rigorous, solutions for the statical case

60. Einstein's general approximative solution and its applications

61. The energy of the gravitational field

62. Modifications of the field equations. Relativity of inertia and the space-bounded universe

a. The Mach principle

b. Remarks on the statistical equilibrium of the system of fixed stars. The lambda-term

c. The energy of the finite universe

Part V. Theories on the nature of charged elementary particles

63. The electron and the special theory of relativity

64. Mie's theory

65. Weyl's theory

a. Pure infinitesimal geometry. Gauge invariance

b. Electromagnetic field and world metric

c. The tensor calculus in Weyl's geometry

d. Field equations and action principle. Physical deductions

66. Einstein's theory

67. General remarks on the present state of the problem of matter

Supplementary notes; Author index; Subject index

### Product Details

- ISBN:
- 9780486641522
- Binding:
- Trade Paperback
- Publication date:
- 07/01/1981
- Publisher:
- DOVER PUBLICATIONS INC
- Edition:
- 1981
- Pages:
- 255
- Height:
- .52IN
- Width:
- 5.36IN
- Thickness:
- .50
- Number of Units:
- 1
- Copyright Year:
- 1958
- UPC Code:
- 2800486641524
- Author:
- Photographer:
- A. Sommerfeld
- Author:
- Author:
- Author:
- Author:
- Media Run Time:
- B
- Subject:
- Science
- Subject:
- Physics-Relativity Theory