General Relativity and Gravitation

, Volume 17, Issue 6, pp 599–612 | Cite as

Propagation of gravitational waves in Robertson-Walker backgrounds

  • Allen I. Janis
Research Articles


The electric and magnetic parts of the linearized Weyl tensor, when the stress-energy tensor is that of a perfect fluid and the background is of Robertson-Walker type, are known to satisfy wave equations that differ by the presence of a source term for the electric part. It is shown here that all of the allowed solutions of the inhomogeneous equation can be obtained by applying a differential operator to the solutions of the homogeneous equation; consequently, electric-type and magnetic-type gravitational waves have the same propagation properties. The results of a complete integration of the appropriately linearized Newman-Penrose equations are given.


Wave Equation Differential Operator Source Term Propagation Property Differential Geometry 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Allen I. Janis
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Physics and AstronomyUniversity of PittsburghPittsburgh

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