Gravitational Lenses (Astronomy and Astrophysics Library)Code: STE0460
Auteurs: Peter Schneider , J. Ehlers , E. E Falco
Uitgever: Springer-Verlag Berlin and Heidelberg GmbH & Co. K
Uitgegeven: October, 1992
This systematic presentation of the current status and problems of the theory and observations of gravitational lensing starts from the equations of classical electrodynamics and general relativity, and develops for the first time gravitational lens theory from first principles. Beginning with simple models and basic properties of the lens mapping, the book proceeds to more complicated recent analytical and numerical treatments, thereby highlighting the prominent role played by lensing statistics in the interpretation of high-redshift objects. A detailed description of microlensing is given. The potential role of gravitational lenses as astronomical tools, for example, in determining the masses of cosmic objects and the scale of the universe and as natural telescopes, is pointed out. On the observational side, details of several known multiple QSOs, radio rings and luminous arcs, and the difficulties of observation and verification of lens systems are summarized. The basics of catastrophe theory, to the extent that it concerns singularities of plane maps, are derived and some techniques for numerical treatment of gravitational lensing are listed. This book can be viewed both as a textbook and as a research monograph.
Light observed from distant objects is found to be deflected by the gravitational field of massive objects near the line of sight - an effect predicted by Einstein in his first paper setting forth the general theory of relativity, and confirmed by Eddington soon afterwards. If the source of the light is sufficiently distant and bright, and if the intervening object is massive enough and near enough to the line of sight, the gravitational field acts like a lens, focusing the light and producing one or more bright images of the source. This book, by renowned researchers in the field, begins by discussing the basic physics behind gravitational lenses: the optics of curved space-time. It then derives the appropriate equations for predicting the properties of these lenses. In addition, it presents up-to-date observational evidence for gravitational lenses and describes the particular properties of the observed cases. The authors also discuss applications of the results to problems in cosmology