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Q & A: fields bending spacetime

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Most recent answer: 12/10/2013
Q:
If the gravity itself could bend the space, could the EM field do the same?? And why?? Thanks for your explanation...
- Franciskus (age 20)
Yogyakarta, Indonesia
A:

It's not really quite that gravity bends space. The bending of spacetime that's caused by energy-momentum is called gravity. In other words gravity is not a separate cause of the bending, it is the bending itself. Since electromagnetic fields carry both energy and momentum, they are among the things which do cause this bending.

Mike W.


(published on 07/15/2013)

Follow-Up #1: field energy and gravity

Q:
I am having difficult with this answer. In looking through this great site, is seems answers were on the order of mass "generating" gravity and that the gravity did bend spacetime as proved by the bending of light. Could you please elaborate your answer possibly with regards to mass/gravity versus EM energy.
- Frank Acree (age 50)
Clinton MS USA
A:

Sure. All forms of mass/energy cause spacetime to bend. Electromagnetic energy is just like any other form in that regard. Our point about gravity is that it's the name given to this bending of spacetime, not really a separate phenomenon. If I've missed the point of your question, please follow up.

Mike W.


(published on 12/10/2013)

Follow-up on this answer.