Foundations of Physics

, Volume 36, Issue 7, pp 1036–1069

Reciprocal Relativity of Noninertial Frames and the Quaplectic Group


DOI: 10.1007/s10701-006-9051-2

Cite this article as:
Low, S.G. Found Phys (2006) 36: 1036. doi:10.1007/s10701-006-9051-2

The frame associated with a classical point particle is generally noninertial. The point particle may have a nonzero velocity and force with respect to an absolute inertial rest frame. In time–position–energy–momentum-space {t, q, p, e}, the group of transformations between these frames leaves invariant the symplectic metric and the classical line element ds2 = d t2. Special relativity transforms between inertial frames for which the rate of change of momentum is negligible and eliminates the absolute rest frame by making velocities relative but still requires the absolute inertial frame. The Lorentz group leaves invariant the symplectic metric and the line elements \(ds^{2} = -dt^{2} + \frac{1}{c^{2}} dq^{2}\) and \(d \mu^{2} = dp^{2}-\frac{1}{c^{2}}de^{2}\). General relativity for particles under only the influence of gravity avoids the issue of noninertial frames as all particles follow geodesics and hence have locally inertial frames. For other forces, the question of the absolute inertial frame remains.) Born conjectured that the line element should be generalized to the pseudo-orthogonal metric \(ds^{2} = -d t^{2}+\frac{1}{c^{2}} dq^{2} + \frac{1}{b^{2}}(dp^{2}-\frac{1}{c^{2}}de^{2})\). The group leaving this metrics and the symplectic metric invariant is the pseudo-unitary group of transformations between noninertial frames. We show that these transformations also eliminate the need for an absolute inertial frame by making forces relative and bounded by b and so embodies a relativity that is shape reciprocal in the sense of Born. The inhomogeneous version of this group is naturally the semidirect product of the pseudo-unitary group with the nonabelian Heisenberg group. This is the quaplectic group.


noninertial maximal acceleration noncommutative geometry Heisenberg Born reciprocity 

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Hewlett-PackardTexasUSA

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