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Keywords:

  • Space-time curvature;
  • Inertial effects;
  • Dirac equation

Abstract

Dirac's equation with gravity for a noninertial observer is derived using local coordinate methods. Calculations for the equation are carried out to second order in the local coordinates. For easy application to interference experiments, the Schrödinger form of the Dirac equation with a well defined Hamiltonian in the local coordinates is presented. The presence of gravitational weighting factors in the scalar product lead to hermitian and antihermitian sectors for the Hamiltonian. The antihermitian part depends directly on the curvature and vanishes for zero curvature. The hermitian part which is important for the determination of phases is studied in detail and the nonrelativistic case is obtained by the application of three successive Foldy-Wouthuysen transformations. The results also give local currents and interactions which have pure inertial, pure gravity and mixed sectors. The pure inertial terms are the ones obtained by Hehl and Ni. The pure gravity and mixed sectors have contributions which are electric, magnetic and double magnetic in character. The focus is on the curvature contributions. Some are well within reach of the anticipated accuracy of atomic interferometers currently under consideration and other terms may follow if improvements can be made.