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Glossary term: Theory Of General Relativity

Description: (The Theory of) General Relativity, published in 1915, is Albert Einstein's theory linking space, time, and gravity. In that theory, gravity is not an ordinary force. Instead, a mass or other source of gravity will distort space and time in its vicinity. This distortion changes how bodies in free fall move. For instance, when a planet orbits the Sun, it's not because of an attractive force – it's because the planet is taking the straightest possible path through space and time (or more precisely: through "spacetime", since in Einstein's theory, there is no unique way of separating space from time). Einstein's theory predicts small corrections to the orbits of astronomical objects, gravitational lensing, black holes, gravitational waves, and the cosmological models for expanding universes.

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Term and definition status: This term and its definition is still awaiting approval

The OAE Multilingual Glossary is a project of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE) in collaboration with the IAU Office of Astronomy Outreach (OAO). The terms and definitions were chosen, written and reviewed by a collective effort from the OAE, the OAE Centers and Nodes, the OAE National Astronomy Education Coordinators (NAECs) and other volunteers. You can find a full list of credits here. All glossary terms and their definitions are released under a Creative Commons CC BY-4.0 license and should be credited to "IAU OAE".