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The distributional stress-energy quadrupole

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Article number035011
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>23/12/2020
<mark>Journal</mark>Classical and Quantum Gravity
Issue number3
Number of pages51
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date23/11/20
<mark>Original language</mark>English


We investigate stress-energy tensors constructed from the delta function on a worldline. We concentrate on quadrupoles as they make an excellent model for the dominant source of gravitational waves and have significant novel features. Unlike the dipole, we show that the quadrupole has 20 free components which are not determined by the properties of the stress-energy tensor. These need to be derived from an underlying model and we give an example motivated from a divergent-free dust. We show that the components corresponding to the partial derivatives representation of the quadrupole, have a gauge like freedom. We give the change of coordinate formula which involves second derivatives and two integrals. We also show how to define the quadrupole without reference to a coordinate systems or a metric. For the representation using covariant derivatives, we show how to split a quadrupole into a pure monopole, pure dipole and pure quadrupole in a coordinate free way.