# Kretschmann scalar

In the theory of Lorentzian manifolds, particularly in the context of applications to general relativity, the **Kretschmann scalar** is a quadratic scalar invariant. It was introduced by Erich Kretschmann.^{[1]}

## Contents

## Definition[edit]

The Kretschmann invariant is^{[1]}^{[2]}

where is the Riemann curvature tensor. Because it is a sum of squares of tensor components, this is a *quadratic* invariant.

For the use of a computer algebra system a more detailed writing is meaningful:

### Examples[edit]

For a Schwarzschild black hole of mass , the Kretschmann scalar is^{[1]}

where is the gravitational constant.

For a de Sitter or Anti de Sitter metric

the Kretschmann scalar is

- .

For a general FRW spacetime with metric

the Kretschmann scalar is

## Relation to other invariants[edit]

Another possible invariant (which has been employed for example in writing the gravitational term of the Lagrangian for some *higher-order gravity* theories) is

where is the Weyl tensor, the conformal curvature tensor which is also the completely traceless part of the Riemann tensor. In dimensions this is related to the Kretschmann invariant by^{[3]}

where is the Ricci curvature tensor and is the Ricci scalar curvature (obtained by taking successive traces of the Riemann tensor). The Ricci tensor vanishes in vacuum spacetimes (such as the Schwarzschild solution mentioned above), and hence there the Riemann tensor and the Weyl tensor coincide, as do their invariants.

The Kretschmann scalar and the *Chern-Pontryagin scalar*

where is the *left dual* of the Riemann tensor, are mathematically analogous (to some extent, physically analogous) to the familiar invariants of the electromagnetic field tensor

## See also[edit]

- Carminati-McLenaghan invariants, for a set of invariants.
- Classification of electromagnetic fields, for more about the invariants of the electromagnetic field tensor.
- Curvature invariant, for curvature invariants in Riemannian and pseudo-Riemannian geometry in general.
- Curvature invariant (general relativity).
- Ricci decomposition, for more about the Riemann and Weyl tensor.

## References[edit]

- ^
^{a}^{b}^{c}Richard C. Henry (2000). "Kretschmann Scalar for a Kerr-Newman Black Hole".*The Astrophysical Journal*; the American Astronomical Society.**535**(1): 350–353. arXiv:astro-ph/9912320v1. Bibcode:2000ApJ...535..350H. doi:10.1086/308819. **^**Grøn & Hervik 2007, p 219**^**Cherubini, Christian; Bini, Donato; Capozziello, Salvatore; Ruffini, Remo (2002). "Second Order Scalar Invariants of the Riemann Tensor: Applications to Black Hole Spacetimes".*International Journal of Modern Physics D*.**11**(6): 827–841. arXiv:gr-qc/0302095v1. Bibcode:2002IJMPD..11..827C. doi:10.1142/S0218271802002037. ISSN 0218-2718.

## Further reading[edit]

- Grøn, Øyvind; Hervik, Sigbjørn (2007),
*Einstein's General Theory of Relativity*, New York: Springer, ISBN 978-0-387-69199-2 - B. F. Schutz (2009),
*A First Course in General Relativity (Second Edition)*, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0-521-88705-2 - Misner, Charles W.; Thorne, Kip. S.; Wheeler, John A. (1973),
*Gravitation*, W. H. Freeman, ISBN 978-0-7167-0344-0