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Spinors and torsion in general relativity

by Roger Penrose
Foundations of Physics ()
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Abstract

Conformal rescalings of spinors are considered, in which the factor O, in eAB~--~,OeAB, is allowed to be complex. It is argued that such rescalings naturally lead to the presence of torsion in the space-time derivative V a. It is further shown that, in standard general relativity, a circularly polarized gravitational wave produces a (nonlocal) rotation effect along rays intersecting it similar to, and apparently consistent with, the local torsion of the Einstein- Cartan-Sciama-Kibble theory. The results of these deliberations are suggestive rather than conclusive.

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