Of Light and Shadows: Raychaudhuri’s Equation, the Big Bang and Black Holes
Einstein’s genius and penetrating physical intuition led to the general theory of relativity, which incorporates gravity into the geometry of spacetime. However, the theory of general relativity leads to perspectives which go far beyond the vision of its creator. Many of these insights came to light only after Einstein’s death in 1955. These developments were due to a new breed of relativists, like Penrose, Hawking and Geroch, who approached the subject with a higher degree of math-ematical sophistication than earlier workers. Some of these insights were made possible because of work by Amal Kumar Raychaudhuri (AKR) who derived an equation which turned out to be a key ingredient in the singularity theorems of general relativity. This article explains AKR’s work in elementary terms.
Volume 27 | Issue 6